The British Franchise Association’s new board of directors was revealed at the Association’s AGM in Birmingham on 12 December, with the new board’s first order of business being to confirm the new bfa chairman as Simon Bartholomew of Oscar Pet Foods.
Hugely respected and popular throughout the franchise community, Bartholomew replaces Michael Eyre, who handed over the reins after becoming the bfa’s longest-serving chair after three years in the role; Eyre remains on the board, which governs bfa affairs, and received a standing ovation following a heartfelt final speech looking back on his time in the role at his annual Gala Dinner.
Former chairman Michael Eyre (L) welcomes new chairman Simon Barthlomew
Simon said: “It’s a real honour to have been selected by my peers to chair the bfa for the next three years. I’m hugely excited about the prospect of leading an Association which represents so many dynamic and diverse companies led by innovative, forward-thinking business men and women.
“It’s an exciting time to be a part of the franchise sector, which has shown exceptional growth during the past five years where other industries have struggled. Ethical franchising has afforded thousands of people the chance to realise their dreams of business ownership, and I’m looking forward to helping many more understand its benefits.”
All 16 Franchisor and Affiliate Member positions on the board are through nomination and election by the bfa’s membership, with those elected then appointing three franchisee board representatives. It is truly the association run for franchising, by franchising, and anyone operating within the ethical franchise sector has the chance to become elected and make a real difference in shaping the future of the thriving industry.
Joining bfa director general Brian Smart on the board of directors are:
Simon Bartholomew, Oscar Pet Foods (Chairman)
Michael Eyre, Blazes Renewables Ltd
Mike Goddard, Belvoir Lettings
Shaun Thomson, Sandler Training
Duncan Berry, Choice Hotels
Alistair Wiggins, Pirtek Ltd (R)
Mark Llewellyn, Revive! Auto Innovations (R)
Sean Derrig, Chemex International
Pam Bader OBE, Molly Maid
Steve Calvert, Safeclean
Dan Archer, NIC Services Group (N)
Lisa Curteis, Rosemary Bookkeeping (N)
Rob Oyston, Sports Xtra (N)
Jane Masih, Owen White (R)
Brian Duckett, The Franchising Centre (R)
Stuart Walsh, Franchise Finance (N)
(N) denotes newly-elected; (R) denotes re-election of a candidate; and all others are continuing board members.
The new bfa board of directors
Elections were also held for the positions of chairs of the bfa’s forums, which offer franchisors and professional advisors to the industry the chance to swap knowledge, expertise and solutions to common problems. They are consistently cited as a key benefit of membership and an unrivalled platform from which to gain business development insight.
The 2014 forum chairs have been confirmed as:
North – Trevor Brocklebank, Home Instead Senior Care
Midlands – Phil Gaffer, Premier Sport
South West – Graham Rogers, OvenGleamers
London/South East – Freddie St George, Raring2Go!
Affiliate – Shirley Hughes, Franchise Careers Centre
The bfa would like to extend enormous gratitude to all its outgoing board members and forum chairs for their excellent work throughout 2013. We look forward to 2014 being another outstanding year for both the bfa and ethical franchising as a whole under the stewardship of the people above.
By Paul Stafford, PR Executive, British Franchise Association