RFG CEO promises support in new video
Retail Food Group’s (RFG) new CEO, Richard Hinson has his sights set firmly on franchisee retention and support, according to a recent video from the retail group.
The video, posted to YouTube last week, is an open invitation for all RFG franchisees to attend the group’s upcoming roadshow events.
In the video, Hinson puts the focus back on the franchisees, promising his continued support moving forward.
“I firmly believe for RFG to be successful, you guys need to be successful, so part of the journey here is to ensure that our franchisees; you, our valued customers are profitable as we go forward into 2019,” Hinson said.
The roadshows will be held across Australia over the next four weeks with the aim of connecting RFG senior management with the franchisees it represents.
“What I’m really keen to present to you is my vision for the future of RFG and the brands,” Hinson said.
“Following on from that, we’ll get our brand teams to talk specifically about the actions, brand by brand so that you get a really clear picture of what RFG is going to be doing over the next 12 months.”
It’s been a tough 12 months for RFG, with stock value falling from $5 to 50c and a number of allegations of poor management and potentially unlawful behaviour coming to light.
The group has also been the subject of much contention at the parliamentary inquiry into the Franchising Code of Conduct.
For Hinson, who joined the group in January before taking over the reins from former managing director, Andre Nell in May, the roadshows are the first in a series of proposed strategies aimed at repairing the fractured relationship between RFG and its franchisees.
Recently, RFG was accused of misleading its franchisees, however the decision to engage with the community marks a welcomed change for the group.
“The forum is designed to be a forum where you can provide open and honest feedback,” Hinson said.
“I will be attending every single one of these roadshow events. My aim is to meet as many of you as I possibly can, listen to your concerns, and start working on how collectively we can deliver a better outcome.”
Richard Forbes, RFG spokesperson said the roadshows aim to demonstrate an attitude and perception change from the group.
"Richard is very customer first, which is franchisee first," Forbes said. "He's quite different from what we've had before."
"I think that's been the criticism of RFG in the past; that we're all about acquiring new brands, and that the customer gets left behind. Richard really wants to share his vision and new direction for the company."
For franchisees that find it difficult to attend given their location, RFG has also offered to provide accommodation, and/or flights for those living more than two and half hours away from their nearest Roadshow location, and pay for parking for those who drive.
While the roadshow is an encouraging promise of good faith from the new CEO, RFG franchisees will be hoping it leads to greater support and a more cohesive relationship moving forward.
You can view the entire video below.