The judges certainly have their job cut out for them when they have to select the winners among the crème de la crème of British franchising
Becoming a successful franchisor requires not only a great idea but also oodles of time and dedication. Having poured so much blood, sweat and tears into setting up their brands and expanding their networks, it’s really rewarding when they are recognised by the industry. So you can imagine the excitement felt by the 17 franchisors nominated in five categories at the annual bfa HSBC Franchisor of the Year awards ceremony.
These Oscars of British franchising certainly look too close to call.For instance the five businesses competing to win the bfa HSBC Franchisor of the Year Award are Bluebird Care, Dream Doors, Driver Hire, Signs Express and Expense Reduction Analysts. The winner of this category will have demonstrated a high level of consistency and excellence in franchising throughout the year.
Fresh from netting the top gong at last year’s awards, Water Babies, the baby swimming franchise, has been nominated in the brand new Brian Smart Award for International Development, which celebrates franchisors that have expanded their brand beyond Blighty’s borders. This category is set to become quite the nail-biter, as the franchise founded by Paul Thompson in 2002 faces off against Christine Stanschus’ Little Kickers, the children’s football coaching franchise. The game is most definitely on.
But while the first two categories are predominantly for the established superstars of British franchising, the ceremony will also celebrate the efforts of the new kids on the block. This year sees the return of Heritage Healthcare, the care franchise that was nominated to this award in 2016. But the business better bring its A-game, as it will be going up against the New Driveway Company, the home-improvement franchise, and the Vapestore, the vaping franchise.
Commenting on the finalists, Pip Wilkins, chief executive at the bfa, said: “Looking through the entries made us very proud and humbled to be part of such a successful industry and those who are just starting their franchising journeys can take inspiration from what these brand have achieved.”
With such talent set to face the judging panel on March, it’s anyone’s guess who amongst the full list of finalists will be lifting trophies on June 28. We can only wish each and every nominee good luck and offer them our heartiest congratulations.