John said, “I found myself in a dilemma in that my kids have now fled the nest and my wife and I want to move away from London. I have created a strong gardening business and want to build another one with Ed's. Being part of Ed's is quite unique in that I am able to split my protected area and capitalise on all the customer goodwill I have generated over the last three years and carry on where I want to live. I have sold half my area for more than I paid when I initially started. Where do you get that kind of flexibility in a business venture!”
“It's all about creating a win-win scenario for all parties involved” says Ed Mauleverer, founder of Ed’s Garden Maintenance. “What we really want is a thriving network of happy operators and happy customers. John has received a payment greater than his initial investment and can rebuild his Ed's business where he wants to live. The customer is happy because they are still going to get a good service from Andy who understands Ed's core values about being prompt reliable and efficient and Ed's has gained a new franchisee. I think we’re unique in that Ed’s is the only franchise business to offer this.”
Releasing a percentage of his customer base keeps John under the VAT threshold, and in freeing up some of his time he will be able to take a strategic approach to growing the business again. Whilst people may think it’s better to have a large territory, the Ed’s business model works on developing an area of customers that is as concentrated as possible. This reduces travel time between jobs and increases the number of gardens that can be maintained in a day.
The perfect scenario is to arrive at one end of a residential road and simply move from garden to garden to the other end of the same street; a scenario that many Ed’s operators have created.
"By paying a little more than I would for a new franchise,” says Andy who has just purchased John's regular customers, “I can really hit the ground running with a strong customer base in place from Day One. I know that I'll have a very healthy revenue stream that will accelerate my goals of growing the business to the next level. The lifestyle is a lot more attractive than my previous one too. My decision was a total no brainer."
Established in 2003, Ed’s started franchising in 2007 and is now the largest domestic garden maintenance franchise in the UK. With over 32 operators Ed’s has welcomed seven new franchisees this year and Ed’s services now extend as far as Norwich, Bristol, the South and Kent Coasts.
Ed’s has demonstrated that it can support new Operators a significant distance from its central office. Currently there is a lot of interest in the Liverpool and Manchester areas.