Susphi chain Go Sushi has followed in the footsteps of Bakers Delight, extending its Manage to Own program, which allows more than 75% of start-up costs to be paid over three to five years.
Go Sushi is part of Pacific Retail Management, which also manages Wasabi Warriors, Kick Juice Bars and Love Coffee & Crepes.
The franchise has made new sites available as part of its manage to own program, which is aimed at “talented, energetic individuals with the drive and aspiration to operate their own business”.
According to Go Sushi group managing director Nicola Mills, the program is aimed at younger candidates in particular.
“Younger entrepreneurs are missing out on the opportunity to own and run their own business because they simply don’t have the capital to start-up,” Mills said in a statement.
In addition to on-the-job training, Go Sushi’s Manage to Own program allows franchisees to pay for the business from the profits they make, rather than making an upfront capital investment.
In addition, more than 75% of the business start-up costs can be paid over a three to five-year period. At least six new sites are available in NSW and Queensland.
Go Sushi follows in the footsteps of Bakers Delight, which enables young franchisees to operate their own business within 12 months through its own Manage to Own program.
Applicants for the Bakers Delight program receive five months of on-the-job training, followed by six months of managing a company-owned store.
They then have the opportunity to lease and potentially purchase a bakery, with a combination of financial assistance that could include working capital, vendor finance and bonus schemes.
Jason Gehrke, director of the Franchise Advisory Centre, says there has been a substantial increase in the number of non-traditional lending methods in the franchising sector.
“[This has] largely been driven by the difficulty that many franchisees have in demonstrating their capacity to service a bank loan or to get a bank loan to start with,” Gehrke says.
“Franchisees are looking at non-traditional finance options such as manage to own, lease to own, etc.”
“We’re going to see more of that as time goes by, not only because of the challenges some people have in securing finance from banks… but due to the characteristics of the candidates.”
Gehrke says the biggest hurdle for young people, when attempting to secure finance, is facing the prospect of a long-term commitment.
“This is a little bit more challenging for Generation Y because as this generation has matured, they’ve adjusted to a rapidly changing environment, including highly frequent job changes,” he says.
“It’s a really big ask of someone in that young age group to make a commitment for five or 10 years – that’s a big deal.”
Gehrke says franchisors are often drawn to young candidates because they’re “very enthusiastic, very talented and very driven”.
“The question is, can they stay there for the long-haul in order to get a return on investment?”