A SLIMMING organisation in Huddersfield is adding weight to the claim that franchising can succeed in lean economic times.
Slimming World has opened 214 new groups across the country during January – including two new groups in Huddersfield.
Across West Yorkshire, the organisation had 4,800 new members in the first four weeks of the year.
Lynda Thwaites, team manager for Huddersfield and Halifax, said: “Despite the current business climate, Slimming World is growing.
“I had three new consultants taking franchises last month and another taking one this month. Two of them are opening up brand new groups and two are taking over an existing group.”
Among them, Anne Dean, who has bought a franchise in Milnsbridge has already set up her group and had 43 new members in her first two weeks.
Emma Cox and Lisa Moore have started their franchises, with Emma launching a new group in Linthwaite and Lisa taking over an existing group in Almondbury.
Said Lynda: “In our first week of the new year, my team – which consists of 31 groups and 15 consultants – have had more than 300 new members come to our groups with many more flooding through the door in this week.”
Slimming World is celebrating its ruby anniversary this year and any consultant that reaches 40 new members within one month will be rewarded with a ruby status. As a result of their efforts, Anne in Milnsbridge and Jackie in Fixby have both achieved the award in their first two weeks.
Despite the economic climate, the franchising sector continued to expand, according to figures from the British Franchising Association.
The UK franchise industry employs nearly 383,000 people and is worth more than £12.4bn a year.
Caryl Richards, managing director of Slimming World, said: “In the current economic climate, people may be wary about starting up a business, which is why it is so important to choose an option that has a strong structure and excellent training and can be set up in your own area
“It’s also vital to make sure there’s room for growth in the business area you’re working in.”
Caryl said: “The increasing need to tackle obesity and the need for support for whole families to adopt healthier lifestyles offers huge opportunities for Slimming World consultants based in their local communities.”
Consultants are all former members of Slimming World. The role is part-time, with the potential to earn £100 to 400 a week for working 10 to 20 flexible hours.
Training and marketing support is offered with a recognised brand that has been established for 40 years. The organisation’s head office in Derbyshire provides administrative support along with centralised marketing and PR, in-house magazines and websites plus nutrition and research expertise.
Emma Cox said: “Purchasing a franchise gave me control and I really enjoy being own boss. What you put in is what you get back and this is reflected in not only the number of people you can help but also in the financial return.
“It’s the best job in the world and one that is hugely rewarding.”