Motor Republic: The franchise opportunity

With vacancies for 10 new franchisees, this established vehicle leasing brand offers budding entrepreneurs a "proven route into self-employment"

Franchise: Motor Republic
Description: Provides vehicle leasing packages to businesses and consumers
Started in: 1992
Founder: Chris Rouse
No. of franchises: 4
Coverage: UK-wide
Average cost per franchise: £18,000
Website: www.motorrepublic.com

2017 sees our 25th anniversary providing vehicle leasing packages to businesses and consumers.

In that time, the business has developed a very slick marketing and operational blueprint which has resulted in us being one of the UK’s largest vehicle brokers supplying thousands of new vehicles every year.

Our head office is based in the West Midlands and even though we supply vehicles throughout the UK we have found that by taking our internet pricing direct to the consumer and dealing face to face we are enjoying the best of all worlds.

Moving into franchising

So how did you move into franchising?

Clients are receptive to having a franchisee live nearby who has the backing of one of the biggest operators in the UK. So, to us, it makes sense to move the business into the hands of locally based franchise owners; we can attract more clients when we work this way and in doing so provide a lucrative income for each franchise owner to create a perfect win-win.

Where did the business open its first franchises?

Our first two trial franchises were refined through 2016 and have provided the basis of the franchise launch.

How successful were those original franchisees?

Very! Our pilot areas are generating six figure net incomes.

The franchise opportunity

What makes the franchise different/unique?

We are a top tier provider of leasing solutions with access to all the top funders in the UK, only a small number of brands achieve that status.

Our group has a car division, a van and commercial division and also an asset finance division which means clients have a tremendous amount of confidence is out ability to supply what we say.

What services do you offer?

Various financial leasing solutions including contract hire, finance lease and also personal leasing solutions.

How big is the market opportunity?

The UK has a love affair with their vehicles and the way in which those vehicles are supplied is increasingly through a financial product.

Clients get tax advantages, low monthly repayments, and a new vehicle every three years or so.

How many franchisees do you have today?

Motor Republic’s first franchisees will launch in the summer and several more are scheduled for the autumn.

How is the brand marketed?

The company mixes traditional and online marketing to create a multi channel campaign designed to generate leads. Head office manages the national brand and franchisees follow a marketing plan at a local level.

How do you divide the regions?

Franchisees manage large territories underpinned by industry data based on the number of potential clients

The perfect franchisee

What do you look for in potential franchisees?

We are confident that any franchisee who possess the right personality and attitude will succeed with Motor Republic. So, we look for those unteachable elements to better understand their attitude to work rate, selling and of course business risk.

So do franchisees work from an office, or are they home-based? Is it part-time or full-time?  

Franchisees run an ultra low overhead business working from home, however we envisage that as the business grows they may well move into a local office.

How are franchisees vetted?

We meet all franchisees and, in the same way that they will evaluate us and our abilities, we will take the same approach.

What do you offer franchisees that sign-up?

A proven route into self employment and a management team that supports their activities at a local level to reach their income objectives as soon as possible.

How much do franchisees pay and what are the ongoing franchise fees?

Currently the fee is discounted to £18,000 including all inventory, training and the franchise launch assist programme. Ongoing fees are a royalty on earnings.

Success and growth

How successful are some of the franchisees today?

Our pilot areas are making six figure profits.

How is the brand looking to grow?

We are looking for 10 franchisees to start with before rolling out the brand through 2018.

What is the potential of the business?

Motor Republic is already part of one of the UK’s largest independent vehicle brokers and each franchisee has the opportunity to scale the business up into a substantial local office that delivers consistent profits from an enjoyable business.

What will the challenges be in achieving that?

This is a sales role which means franchisees will reap what they sow to a large degree.

We don’t envisage appointing any franchisees who can not commit to full time hours or are afraid of face to face selling and networking.

To what extent are the founders involved today?

The business is still run by the founder and a team of 36 staff at head office.

Finally, is the company a British Franchise Association (BFA) member?

Motor Republic is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority which has substantial regulatory powers. The business is also professionally advised by franchising specialists with decades of franchising experience.

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