Zeus Street Greek franchisee spills the beans on what to expect
Inside Franchise Business caught up with Zeus Street Greek, a modern Greek casual dining chain.
Jaclyn Diles, one of four owners who make up Zeus Street Greek Surry Hills, takes our Q & A.
1. How long was the process of buying a franchise to opening the store?
As a collective, the four owners who make up Zeus Surry Hills, we had considered the option of buying into the Zeus network for some time before we formally began the process. We all wanted to do something for ourselves and were drawn to the franchise model. We consider ourselves to be diligent, hardworking, and we had the desire to our own business. So, once we’d made the decision, the process took 18 months from end to end.
One of the most critical parts of the process was site selection. This element was lead and championed by the franchisor and we were patient throughout. It took a good six months to find the location we’re in but we’re thrilled we took the time needed to secure it.
Our store, Zeus Street Greek Surry Hills, was a greenfield site, the building was completely redeveloped. There were delays that came along with the build but we weren’t taken by surprise as we’d been prepared by the franchisor who was working hand-in-glove with the developers. There are elements of the process that are out of your control so you need to be prepared for that.
The dwell time was a blessing as it gave us the opportunity to establish clear roles and finalise our partnership agreement.
We were patient throughout as we had faith in the process.
2. What do you value most about the franchisor’s support during the process?
The experience within the Zeus business is significant and gave us great confidence. Their knowledge and support was critical as this was our first foray into owning our own business and into the food retail industry.
We were guided through each step of the process by the franchisor and the wider Zeus team – the build, finance, operations, marketing – all facets were covered. It felt as though the Zeus team were standing next to us every step of the way, setting us up for the best possible outcome.
3. What advice do you have for potential buyers about selecting a franchise system?
Proven track record, experience and wealth of knowledge at a franchisor level. You need to do your homework, carry out the required due diligence around understanding the brand and how it functions. We firmly believe that you need to have a true passion and belief in the brand and the long term vision for the business. For us, there was also a strong cultural fit. Our Hellenic heritage was aligned to the foundation from which the Zeus brand was built. Notions of community, family and hospitality were ones that fit with us.
4. What advice do you have for potential buyers regarding the store opening process?
The store opening process comes with a mix of excitement and nerves. You’ve been prepared throughout and had the entire process laid out but it’s not until you fire up the Souvla (popular Cypriot skewered meat dish), turn on the lights, open the doors and have customers walk through them until you’re able to fully grasp the scope. The support of the Zeus team during the first few weeks of trade has been amazing. They’ve instilled the confidence in us to be able put all that you’ve learnt into practice. It’s a proven system so it’s about settling in and finding your rhythm.
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