Your franchise questions answered – Part 3

In my previous articles I have answered some of the key questions people ask when looking at franchising as an investment opportunity. This week I will answer some more of your questions.

How do I write a business plan? 

Most banks have business planning templates to help you, whilst most franchisors also offer guidance with the business planning process. It is often assumed that a business plan is needed just to secure funding. While this is an important benefit, it should also be used as a management tool to monitor the ongoing performance of your business against the original benchmarks and identify areas for improvement as well as potential opportunities. The plan is a working document and should be regularly reviewed and updated as the business develops. 

The business plan should be punchy - a common mistake is to make it too detailed. Ensure that it grabs the bank manager’s interest. Presentation of the plan is important to create a positive impression and you should practice delivery of your plan beforehand so that you come across professionally. Let the bank manager have a copy of your business plan in advance so they can prepare for the meeting. Expect your plan to be challenged and you should be able to confidently answer questions about the operational and financial aspects of your business.

Why should I choose Lloyds Bank ahead of other banks? 

Lloyds Bank is committed to help new businesses get off the ground and to create new jobs. Franchising occupies an increasingly important role in supporting enterprising individuals to set up their own business. The British franchise market continues to demonstrate strong growth and Lloyds Bank will remain at the forefront of this expansion by providing banking services

and finance to encourage new franchise ownership. Lloyds Bank is recognised by the British Franchise Association as having specialist franchise knowledge and experience to support its franchise customers.  

Lloyds Bank has more than 200 managers who have received training supported by the British Franchise Association and sector professionals, and they participate in regular refresher courses. Our dedicated team of franchise specialists are available to offer support and guidance throughout the life of your business. Lloyds Bank continues to support the growth of ethical franchising in the UK and has recently expanded our franchise team to meet the growing demand for banking and finance in this market.   

Why is it so important to get the legal agreement checked out beforehand?

Many franchise agreements can be long and complicated documents. While franchisors will tell you the agreement is not negotiable and they will not amend the contract, it is important you fully understand the commitment you are entering into. The legal agreement should be checked and explained to you by an experienced franchise solicitor before signing. Lloyds Bank offers a franchise agreement review service, at a discounted rate, in conjunction with an experienced franchise solicitor. 

Where can I go to learn more about franchising?

 The British Franchise Association (bfa) regularly holds exhibitions and seminars that provide an invaluable insight into franchise investment. Before you take the step into investing in a franchise it is important that you receive the right guidance. Attending a bfa prospective franchisee seminar will provide a would be investor with a much better awareness and understanding on the benefits and pitfalls of franchise investment and how to avoid the common mistakes the unsuspecting investor can make.