Franchise Spotlight: Restaurants

If you have catering-trade experience or wish to develop a restaurant franchise, the sector has many different models. 

Eating out has become much more popular in the UK, there is now a range of experiences and price points which have become part of the public perception. As a result, one of your first tasks is bound to be making sure you’re aware of exactly what a restaurant franchise is.

So, here’s an overview of the principal features:

Sector overview

  • Between 2008 and 2016, branded restaurants seem to have become an increasingly popular option for UK consumers. (Statista)
  • According to a PwC survey (2017), demographic and consumer trends mean eating out happens much more frequently and for a broader range of occasions.
  • Figures for 2017 show consumer spending on cafés and restaurants reached almost £88 billion. And in the same year, UK households spent an average of £19 per week on meals in restaurants and cafés, with the 30-64 age group also spending significantly more. (Statista)

Because of their innovative ways of approaching the customer experience, fast food franchises initially had a strong influence on the customer experience.

It used to be very unusual to be served food of a uniform quality in rapid time. Though it is true that fast food franchises are now different, they nevertheless continue to invest a great deal in rapid, seamless interactions with consumers, aiming to create large volumes of business.

A restaurant franchise is a different proposition: Here, there will generally be more square footage available for diners, and larger covers would be expected.

Though food will be branded, it is also likely to be of a noticeably higher quality, both in terms of its content and its presentation, and there may well be a broader choice of menu options. 

As a result of such important detail, guests are likely to stay much longer in these establishments, will probably pay more for their food, and will regard the restaurant venue itself as much more of a destination.

An example of a well-established restaurant franchise is CREAMS, who provide British Luxury in the form of pastries, afternoon tea, and an extensive hot food menu.

Their locations are usually aimed to cater to large covers with a grand appearance and many of their diners’ pre-book and stay for a long period of time to enjoy their surroundings and the overall standard of service that they offer. 

Is it for you? 

A restaurant franchise opportunity would be a great option for someone who is ambitious and very keen to run their own business, while also retaining the support and guidance available to those who work with a leading global brand.

And to make a success of such an opportunity you should be a good communicator as well as a good listener and be able to model the good time-management skills you wish to develop in those you will seek to motivate.

Meanwhile, franchisors will be looking for someone who has shown they can be successful in business (even in a different field). 

They will also expect any potential franchisee to show they really know, understand and care passionately about the franchise brand. And as with any business role, you should have good people skills, be well-organised and professional in your approach and appearance.

In addition, if you are to make the very most of any training and support facilities your franchisor provides, you will need to be a person who remains open to advice and guidance.

A typical day

Though your preliminary training may have included ‘live’ experience in other restaurants, starting out on your own for the first time is always an extra challenge.

You will have to work hard to get your planning in place and learn to anticipate potential problems as early as you can. Remember too that your support network is there to offer just that: support.

So, it’s a sign of common sense (rather than a weakness) to know when to seek advice.

However, as you start to find your feet and gain experience in your role, the help you may well need most is timely advice from an industry-savvy mentor and/or moral support and more personalised tips from a designated ‘franchise buddy’ who has been in your position in recent times.



Joshua Antoniou

About the author

Joshua Antoniou is now Global Account Executive having started at Dynamis in the Customer Service department. He also writes for BusinessesForSale.com & FranchiseSale.com.