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Description: Established in 1907, Mobalpa are a premium designer and manufacturer of kitchens, bathrooms and living solutions. Opportunities: Across the UK. Business Type: Franchise. Minimum Investment: £100,000. Financing Assistance: Yes, from the company. Training Provided: Yes.

Mo Yaqub: Pinner, North London franchisee

Mobalpa_Feb_15-002.jpgWhat did you do prior to franchising?
I have been in retailing all my life. I was a general manager for a high-profile sheds company in London until I was made redundant at the age of 37. I decided to take a break from retailing and went went into property development, which I thoroughly enjoyed but it lacked the buzz and the interaction with customers that you get with retail.

What interested you about the kitchen industry?
I have been in nearly every type of retailing except kitchens. In the kitchen business you get to spend time with your customers, it’s not a quick sale. It’s an interesting sector where attention to detail is hugely important and I enjoy this aspect of the job.

What appealed to you about Mobalpa?
I spent a lot of time looking for a business that would fit my lifestyle and it was difficult to find the right opportunity. I eventually came across Mobalpa and was invited to visit the Warrington store. I liked the way the store was laid out, I liked the product and felt it was sellable, and I liked the people in the head office team.

What training and support did/do you receive?
Mobalpa provides a very comprehensive training and development plan. One week in Warrington then six weeks spent in France covering sales, design and technical training.

How's it going so far? What sort of challenges have you faced?
It’s been an interesting nine months since I began this venture; finding the right location and property was a challenge and finding the right team was tough. Things have started to get easier as process and procedures are introduced into the daily routine.

What plans do you have for the future?
If Mobalpa Pinner does well I will be looking to open a second showroom within two years. Mobalpa is at the top of the market in terms of quality of product, shop-fit, standard of customer service, staff training and development.

Would you recommend franchising to others?
I would recommend franchising, but you need to pick one that suits your skill set and do your homework on the company.

What advice would you give to future Mobalpa franchisees?
Be prepared for hard work – it’s not easy! Secure the best location you can and, most importantly, take the time to recruit the right team. 


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