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Photography Franchise Opportunities for Sale

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Trends and Facts About Photography Franchises

Over the last 200 years, photography as a medium has evolved from highly specialized science to more simple processes, allowing more of us to take photos. However, while the amount of amateur photography has never been greater, there's still a massive desire for professional photographers to expertly capture special events.

During significant life events, people want to live in the moment. But they also want to remember it forever, through photographs. Whether it's the birth of a baby, a wedding, a milestone birthday, or a family holiday card, there are always events people want high-quality, professional photos of.

With a photography franchise, you can ensure your clients have a stress-free time enjoying their celebration while you snap all the images they desire. In addition to the more traditional mode of photography, there are also now photobooths that can be stocked with props and fun accessories. These photobooths are becoming increasingly popular, especially with younger crowds, giving those in attendance fun souvenirs from the night.

Another exciting development in the photography industry is the usage of drones for commercial purposes.
Originating in the military, drones have traditionally been used for security purposes. But within the past decade, governments have begun granting exemptions that clear the way for drones to be used in new ways. Nowadays, drones are used in a myriad of manners, from entertainment to package delivery. “It gives [companies] less risk; you don't have to climb a roof or climb a cell tower,” says drone-based franchise owner Roger Armstrong.

According to drone photography franchise SkyCam, “Drone hire in the UK has absolutely gone through the roof in the last five years and is now thriving, but with the laws and regulations in place, you need to ensure you are licenced and backed by the right people before stepping into this industry.”

The UK Photographic Industry

According to IBISWorld, “expected increases in real household disposable income are anticipated to support demand for the services of professional photographers over the next five years.” A large factor in the bounce back is an anticipated rise in the number of weddings, the largest active segment of the industry.

In addition, the market research company also points to re-expansion in the advertising budgets of corporate clients, another major segment of the commercial photography industry, as another encouraging sign for renewed growth in the industry.

Here are some more quick facts about the industry, in general:

  • The market size, measured by revenue, of the photographic activities industry is £1.2bn for 2022.
  • The market size of the photographic activities industry is expected to increase 32.2% in 2022.
  • According to Skillset, the photo imaging industry comprises almost 14,000 companies, almost half (49% or 6,800) of which are sole trading or freelance photographers.
  • Per Statista, there are approximately 84,000 employed and self-employed photographers, audio-visual, and broadcasting equipment operators in the United Kingdom.

(It should be noted that complete estimates for the industry are hard to come by. Freelancers, which make up a large percentage of what the Office for National Statistics (ONS) terms the photo imaging sector, are excluded from many counts.)

Categories of Commercial Photography Franchises

Commercial photography, portraiture, special events photography, and industrial photography are all part of the photography market. Here are some of the main categories:


As noted above, weddings are big business in photography. While it’s a one-time transaction…typically, weddings are a consistent form of income for photographers. It’s a profitable niche too: Per a survey by Your Perfect Wedding Photographer, the starting average cost of a full-day wedding photography package in the UK is £1,590. According to the company, it has “conducted this survey over the last 3 years and the change has been ever so slight; overall the average is around the £1500 mark.” Though it’s usually a one-time deal, if pleased with your work couples may return to you for anniversaries, family portraits, and other picture needs.

Kids and Families

Daycare/school pictures aren’t going out of style any time soon. Neither is the family photo. Typically falling under the heading of photographic portrait studios, these services make up a significant portion of the industry as well. This industry segment has two major categories: school and non-school portraits.


Sports and athletic teams are another primary customer base of photography franchisees. Often, organizations appreciate the turnkey approach photography franchisees provide in managing services for large numbers of players in an area they typically don’t have a lot of expertise in.

Real Estate

Real estate photography is another big segment within the industry. With the ever-increasing competition to buy and sell, realtors and their clients look for every way to get the best deal. And one of those ways is high-level photography for their brochures and other sales literature. Franchisees who choose this market segment can offer their services to residential, commercial, and architectural clients.

Other Assorted Events

While we can all be amateur photographers nowadays with our smartphones, people will still want a professional to capture special, candid moments at birthday parties, family reunions, church functions, holidays, and a number of other special occasions. There’s also corporate photography for marketing materials and other brand imaging, as well as personal headshots, and more.

What to Look for When Choosing a Photography Franchise

People buy into franchises for many different reasons. Suppose you are enthusiastic about owning your own business, but can’t quite come up with a business idea of your own.

Or, maybe, you know exactly what you want to do, but the idea of doing all of the legwork in setting of a business – such as brand development, writing a business plan, learning the rules and regulations of the industry, finding how to supplement your existing skills in the area, figuring out marketing, etc. – makes your head spin.

For either case, franchising may be the best method for making your dreams come true.

When deciding which franchise to invest in, you should compare how much and what types of support the franchisors offer on an initial and ongoing basis. The most common services offered by the franchisor include but are not limited to the following:

  • A well-known brand name
  • Use of operating manual
  • Training
  • Assistance in choosing and developing the franchise location
  • Grant of a territory with a level of competitive protection
  • Advertising and marketing strategy guidance
  • Advice and business support from headquarters

With a recognisable brand name and logo, high-quality signage, and other support materials provided by the franchisor, you will be able to focus your efforts on the everyday aspects of running the business. This includes staffing and managing the company and ordering supplies, and selling and passing on the service.

It’s important to remember that even with the guidance and support, franchises are still independently-owned businesses. Therefore, whether your franchise is a success or failure is based entirely on you and your ability to run the company.

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