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First year success for the Finlays

Since launching their Southport-based CeX store a year ago, husband and wife Robert and Betty Finlay, along with their three children have found family and franchising to be the key to their success.

Robert Finlay recognised the huge potential that second-hand entertainment franchise CeX had to offer, after seeing his brother become a highly successful franchise owner and go on to open multiple CeX outlets.

The retail franchise presented the perfect opportunity for Robert to utilise his management skills and fulfil his ambition of running an exciting family business.

With the combined efforts of his wife Betty, his children William, Kasey and Charlotte, and the CeX support team, Robert has found his first year as a CeX franchise owner hugely enjoyable and rewarding.

“We’ve had a great first year and the business has grown from a very promising start,” says Robert.

“All of the training and preparation that we did prior to opening has really paid off and part of the reason for the successful growth of the business has been the ongoing operational support from CeX.

“Since opening, I’ve been really pleased with the results, we’ve built a regular clientele of customers and our results have been in line with our business plan.”

Before launching their CeX store Robert, Betty and William received comprehensive systems training while also gaining valuable hands-on experience in neighboring CeX stores.

“It took a big investment in both our time as well as financially in order to complete the necessary training required,” explains Robert. “However, this training gave us the opportunity to get to know some of the local staff, which has been very useful on an ongoing day-to-day basis.

“The time we spent training before we opened gave us the confidence to recruit and employ our own team of staff and to help us to run the business successfully.”

For some, working closely with family members may not be a desirable thought. However, the Finlays have embraced their family unity and Robert has found that the good definitely outweighs the bad when combining family and franchising.

“My wife and son are actively involved on a day-to-day basis,” says Robert. “One of the benefits has been that my son, who is 19, loves working in the business and it has now become his chosen career path. In addition, because all of the family members work in the business, we all understand and share the occasional frustrations and appreciate the commitment and hard work required to make it successful.

“Our business has grown so well that we are well advanced in our plans to open a second CeX business later this year. Part of the benefit of working with family members is that I expect my son to be in a position to manage our second business.”

Robert has not looked back since launching his CeX franchise and would definitely recommend the business to those who love gadgets and working with the public. However, he does warn that it may not be the business for everyone.

“It’s a retail business, open seven days a week and it’s hard work, but if you’re prepared to put the effort the prospects are excellent. I don’t regret joining CeX.

Reported by Tiffany Brooking