|Michael Johnson, Managing Director,
Card Connection (left) and Veni Nandavaram (right)
“Previously, I ran several newsagents shops with my brother and so I already knew about Card Connection, as the local franchisee merchandised the greetings cards in our stores,” explains Veni. “I had always been impressed with the creativity of the design and quality of the products and when the area came up for sale, I knew this was our chance!
“Card Connection franchisees deliver stock on a consignment basis to retailers, which means the retailer only pays for what they sell,” continues Veni. “I knew this clever business model, combined with the regular merchandising service the franchisee provided worked really well for us as retailers and so my wife and I were keen to become involved.
“Although Card Connection’s training has been comprehensive, I believe my retail background will help us develop the franchise further,” confirms Veni. “For example, as well as greeting cards, Card Connection also supplies gift wrap, bottle bags and party accessories so there is always a chance to help shop managers expand their range and optimise income through different product lines. We can create a win-win situation by helping retailer improve their bottom line and at the same time that means increasing our profit margins.
“I also understand the importance of customer satisfaction and how creating a stunning display of cards and accessories in-store will encourage buying behaviour,” explains Veni. “By regularly updating all the stock of greeting cards and replacing designs with seasonal product the displays will always look fresh and tempting. So far, this strategy is working really well and we already opened a new account in the first week of trading! The Card Connection team has been really supportive and I am very much looking forward to working with my wife and building our business over the long term.”
Card Connection is part of UK Greetings, which is a subsidiary of the largest publicly owned greeting card publisher in the world and has limited vacancies for franchisees that are keen to run an expanding business. Suitable candidates would ideally have some management experience as, once established, and depending on the size of the territory, they could be expected to employ a small team, operate a small warehouse and have several liveried vans on the road.
Since the franchise network in the UK is complete, the available opportunities now consist of acquiring an already-established territory from an existing franchisee. These vary in price according to their level of development, but start at £7K + Stock + Card Connection fee with earnings potential in excess of £50k per annum.