Almost a decade and Bedshed franchisee hasn't looked back
Bedshed franchisee Graham Gibson has owned his business for nine years. He says location is key and advises potential franchisees to “do their homework”.
1. When and why did you decide to buy a franchise?
“My dad was in the furniture game so it was a natural decision for me to enter the industry as well. When I purchased my bedding franchise I already had over two decades’ franchising experience with a competitor. The opportunity arose to acquire a Bedshed bedding franchise almost a decade ago now and I haven’t looked back.”
2. How did you go about researching the brand?
“I opened my franchise during Bedshed’s initial period of expansion on the eastern seaboard. I researched the brand very thoroughly, visited the head office in Perth, spent time with the management team and also conducted store visits.
Having been in the industry for so many years, I knew the market well and I had good industry contacts who had only favourable things to say about Bedshed. I also had the benefit of having previously owned a franchised business so I knew what I was looking for. The end result of this due diligence was a very high level of comfort in acquiring a Bedshed franchise.”
3. What was the major reason for you choosing this brand?
“Bedshed was and continues to be the most successful franchise in Western Australia. It’s a great concept, with longevity, a proven track record and enormous growth potential on Australia’s eastern seaboard.”
4. How did you fund your franchise investment?
“It was through a combination of rebates, personal funds and leasing arrangements.”
5. What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned as a franchisee?
“This isn’t so much a lesson but a factor to highlight for any potential franchisee – location is one of the most important aspects of your shop. Be sure you have the right location to maximise your success.”
6. What has been the biggest challenge as a franchisee?
“Finding a good sales team can at times be challenging. You need a balanced team who share your passion and enthusiasm for outstanding levels of service.”
7. What goals have you achieved since being a franchisee?
“I’ve recently relocated my store from its original freestanding site in Cheltenham to a new location in Moorabbin in Melbourne’s south-east. At the end of 2011, the store was in need of a refit and when we got wind of a more appealing new site available in Moorabbin, we jumped at the opportunity. The relocation process was very straightforward, largely due to the support of the management team.
My new franchise features the company’s in-store retailing technology – technology we would not have had access to without the strength of the company behind us. There’s never been a more exciting time to be involved because no other retailer has pushed the in-store ecommerce boundaries like Bedshed has.”
8. What advice would you offer someone thinking of investing in a franchise business?
“It’s essential that potential franchisees do their homework and do it well. Find out about the people behind the operation and everything possible about how the business operates. Talk with people in the know and learn as much as you can to ensure you have a high degree of comfort in your decision.”
9. Would you invest in this brand again?
“Yes absolutely. I’ve had my Bedshed franchise for nine years and with my store’s recent move to a new location, it is exciting times ahead.”