Specsavers has set its sights on a market leading position by seeking a further 50 franchised stores by the end of next year, the company has told StartupSmart.
The optical retail brand launched in Australia in 2008 and has a 100% franchised model across the world. It currently has 239 franchises across Australia but said that it was looking for more, with an immediate target of 50 or more by the end of 2011.
“The roll out is slowing down, but we’d want around 100 more in the future,” says managing director Peter Larsen. “We are 100 stores in 100 days and the first run locations were very obvious, but it then becomes more difficult to find the right people.”
“We have a great geographic spread and we are looking for good people across Australia. We are looking for passionate retailers and passionate optometrists. We then marry up the two.”
“The retailers often have an optical background, but not necessarily. We’d encourage anyone to make contact with us.”
Larsen says that Specsavers’ franchised model has had a “very significant” role in its success to date in Australia.
“It’s been a key underpinning factor in our success,” he says. “Owner operators care more and they have more long-term stake in the business. We have a model that retains key people in key locations.”
“The DNA of the business is to support the franchisees. We have training centres and business support centres in every state. We are proactive in ensuring the success of franchisees.”