Welcome to the MUFR–Service Brands Edition Newsletter!
Slammed by Covid in 2020? Looking for a safer investment haven in 2021? Welcome to the inaugural Issue of the Multi-Unit Franchisee Report–Service Brands Edition newsletter. Let us be your vaccine against another slump in your bottom line!
We’ve created this newsletter to provide information on franchising opportunities that have surfaced during this period of pandemic-mandated restrictions and uncertainty for so many multi-unit and multi-brand operators.
Food brands were hit hard initially, but many quickly adapted with drive-thru, takeout, and delivery service, especially QSRs, whose value generally rose in 2020. However, service brands dependent on customers walking through their doors had to shut down and struggled to survive: fitness centers and gyms, massage and spa salons, child care and education centers, hospitality and lodging, and more. Even traditionally recession-proof segments like hair salons (“Everybody needs a haircut!”) had to shut their doors completely for a time, then severely restrict occupancy.
Some brick-and-mortar service brands were able to innovate and adapt by offering online versions of their services: gyms and fitness centers for example, or online tutoring, educational enrichment, and personal and business coaching.
Many non-brick-and-mortar brands, however, were declared essential during the pandemic: people still moved, plumbing still broke, vehicles still needed maintenance and repair, houses and businesses damaged by fire, floods, and wind still required remediation and restoration, and seniors still needed home care.
Bottom line? With no need for retail storefronts or close personal contact with customers, many non-brick-and-mortar brands declared essential during the pandemic thrived.
Besides being declared essential, many non-brick-and-mortar service brands offer additional advantages, including the following:
- Low cost of entry
- Rapid start-up
- Ease of operation
- Higher margins
- Defined territories
- Home office, flexible hours
- Low inventory costs
More details on these benefits and advantages can be found in the fourth article in this newsletter.
Additionally, for corporate refugees, non-brick-and-mortar service brands offer an ideal opportunity to leverage their business management and sales skills to gain more control and certainty over their financial future.
Looking ahead to 2021 and beyond, brands long considered recession-proof are now also being evaluated for their potential as pandemic-proof – and as an added hedge against uncertainty, with predictions of new pandemics down the road. As viruses adapt, so must business owners.
With more people spending more time WFH, the market for home services is expected to grow for the foreseeable future. Computer repair anyone? Remodeling for a home office? House painting? Housecleaning? Lawn and landscaping services? Swimming pool maintenance? Pest control? As consumers spruce up their nests, opportunities for non-brick-and-mortar services will continue to grow.
Other potential non-brick-and-mortar franchising opportunities include brands offering services such as mobile pet grooming, at-home senior and health care, leaning services (residential and commercial), business consulting and coaching, real estate, travel services, and more.
For multi-unit franchisees looking to the future after a year of watching Covid wreak havoc on brick-and-mortar brands, an increasing number of operators in those segments are looking seriously at diversifying by investing in non-brick-and-mortar service brands that not only were recession-resistant, but proved to be pandemic-resistant as well. Think essential!
If you’re one of them, this newsletter is for you. Look for future issues arriving in your mailbox soon.
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