Franchise Spotlight: Cafés & Coffee Shops

If you still want a shot at success within the industry, investing in a franchise might be your answer.

Although we’re inheritably a tea-drinking nation, Britain’s thirst for top-quality, barista-served coffee is ever-growing.

The industry

You rarely have to walk far to quench your caffeine fix, with more than 22,000 coffee shops in the UK; double the number of outlets operating 10 years ago. 

You should be aware, this £6 billion sector is not for the faint-hearted. Every high street is dominated by coffee shops offering ethically-sourced blends and more than five varieties of milk.

Industry revenue is forecast to grow at an annual rate of 4% up to 2019, with recognised brands and chains leading the sector.

As pubs continue to close across the UK, cafés and coffee shops have taken their place as Brit’s preferred social scene. Costa reigns the biggest coffee shop chain in the UK with 2,422 locations, more than double in the last 10 years. Starbuck is the second largest chain with 898 and Café Nero third, with 650 stores.

The UK leads the growth in branded coffee shop expansion within Europe, with a total of 7,421 outlets.

Franchise opportunities can reduce the risk involved when operating a business in an extremely competitive industry. However, due to the market’s high-growth, there will be fewer opportunities to own a coffee shop franchise over the next five years, as there will already be enough outlets.

This means that should you have an interest in the industry, you need to make sure you have what it takes.

Be different

There are a lot of diverse franchises that offer a niche product, with coffee and tea sold as an additional purchase.

Pretzel retailer Auntie Annie’s claims the title as the world’s largest soft pretzel franchise, with 1,500 stores in 31 different countries.

With these types of franchise opportunities, it is important to consider the location and whether the demographics of that area will respond well to the product you’re selling.

Operating in an area that benefits from tourism and/or a heavy footfall could also be something to consider.

With cafés and coffee shops now the most common meeting venue, offering a unique space or experience could be a great USP for your new venture. Franchises opportunity CREAMS is capitalising on the UK’s afternoon tea craze by offering customers luxury cakes and patisseries in a sophisticated retail space.

Whether it’s a cycling coffee shop, a cat café, or cereal bar, the beauty of having a saturated market means it can pay to be different.

Convenience

No one has the time or need to hunt out a good-quality cup of coffee. So why not be as convenient as physically possible and take your coffee shop to your customers.

Coffee vans capitalise on this market, providing an opportunity to be the sole vendor on business parks or directly outside office blocks, as well as the chance to attend events and markets.

CAFE2U boasts the UK’s leading mobile coffee franchise, with more than 85 vans operating around the country. This style of trading also helps entrepreneurs tap into the coffee scene at a much lower investment cost than other bricks-and-mortar businesses, with lower overheads to factor into your operational costs too.

Responsibilities of a franchisee

As a franchisee, you will be given all the infrastructure and on-going guidance and advice.

However, developing and maintaining good relationships with your suppliers, staff and customers is a key skill that all franchisees should possess.

You should be passionate about the products you’re selling and the service you’re offering; try to absorb all the information given during training and always use a franchises ongoing support to your utmost advantage.

Despite having the comfort of operating under a well-known brand, you are still the face of the business and accountable for its success.



Krystena Griffin

About the author

Krystena Griffin writes for all titles in the Dynamis stable including BusinessesForSale.com, FranchiseSales.com and PropertySales.com as well as other industry publications.

@Be_TheBoss