Britain prides itself on its love of good food. Whether Britons are celebrating, commiserating or relaxing, good food and drink will be an inevitable part of the experience. As such there are lots of exciting food and catering franchise opportunities to choose from across the UK. The food and catering industry lends itself particularly well to franchising. Franchising is the reason many fast food restaurants have prospered because they are able to divide the challenge of human resources constraints, management and profit margins.
The Different Types of Food and Catering Franchises
Vegan and Vegetarian Franchises
With veganism and vegetarianism becoming more popular, the need for vegan and vegetarian restaurants is increasing. It appears that most towns and cities have at least one vegan or vegetarian restaurant or cafe as the trend towards healthy eating increases. You will be tapping into the demand for healthy eating on the go, with most of the on-the-go options available falling into the fast food category. You will meet a wide variety of people from all sorts of backgrounds. The initial investment capital you will require to start up varies depending on your location and target audience.
Healthy snacks can be hard to come by. There is a plethora of fast food snack choice, which are largely high in saturated fat. All eyes are on healthy eating in the media at the moment so getting into healthy snacks at this time might well be a wise business decision. From juices and smoothies to wholemeal wraps and falafel, there are plenty of health-conscious food choices to invest in. As with establishing a vegan or vegetarian food franchise, depending on your location and intended audience your initial investment capital will vary.
Fast Food Franchises
Whilst there is a significant trend towards healthy eating, the popularity of fast food has not waned. People still want quick burgers, chips, kebabs, sandwiches and pizza so there is still a market for fast food franchises. The investment capital you will require for this industry will vary considerably depending on the franchise and location.
Ice cream and frozen yoghurt Franchises
Ice cream is enduringly popular, particularly on a hot summer’s day. This is an exciting and varied opportunity as you could invest in a mobile ice cream stall or work in a permanent shop setting, catching passing trade. Depending on the franchise opportunity you decide to invest in the initial investment capital you will require will range from a few hundred pounds to a few thousand.
Puddings and Desserts Franchises
This is a newcomer to the British high street. Specialist pudding and dessert cafes are popping up all over the UK so this is an exciting opportunity to pounce on, especially if you know an area where you think this kind of business would be well received. The investment capital is usually in the region of a few thousand to set up, but can increase significantly, depending on the level of service you wish to provide as well as the location. Puddings and desserts as well as ice cream and frozen yogurt are a high-margin segment to invest in and so can yield excellent profits.
Coffee and Hot Beverages Franchises
Coffee and hot drinks are enduringly popular and successful businesses. Prices for coffee and other hot drinks keep rising, despite the extremely high profit margin already being made by the industry. Regardless of this, customers continue to want a coffee, hot chocolate or cup of tea when they are out and about. Positioned in an area where you will catch plenty of passing trade, such as near a train or bus station, near a popular family-centric park or in the centre of a busy shopping area, you will meet a wide range of people, develop some regulars and can set your opening hours around busy periods. Your initial investment capital can be fairly low (as little as £5000) but this does vary depending on your location and intended market.
Pubs and Bars Franchises
Whilst there is a trend towards people drinking at home rather than going out for a drink, people continue to flock to the pub or a wine bar on a hot summer’s day with their friends to enjoy some good small talk and set the world to rights. The minimum initial investment can be fairly substantial, i.e., £20,000, however this is an industry with many perks. You will largely be closed during the day as most pubs and wine bars are open from 5:30pm onwards during the week and from about 12pm at the weekend, so if you have a young family this will free up your days to spend time with them. You will need little in the way of formal qualifications. You will be meeting and working with a wide range of people from different walks of life. Building up a reputation for being a good place for a quick pint or glass of wine in a friendly and relaxed setting can lead to a strong client base of regulars. Currently, there is a growing trend towards artisanal drinks – gin, for instance, is steadily growing in popularity – so tapping in to one of these trends might be a brilliant business opportunity.
The Benefits of Food and Catering Franchises
There are some serious advantages to the food and catering industry for franchise opportunities. Not only is there a wide range of franchise opportunities requiring a range of different start-up fees, but there are very few which require formal training or qualifications. All will require basic training in health and safety and food and hygiene but very few require qualifications in food preparation, etc. With most of these opportunities there are extremely high profit margins so you’ll reap the rewards of your hard work. The hours can be flexible and you can set up business nearly anywhere. If you are a people person who loves meeting new people and would look forward to chatting with regulars, then this could be the franchise opportunity for you, particularly if you can combine this with a love for food and drink.