Children Nursery Business: Are There Franchises?

15/12/2018 08:00 | Start a business

children nursery

If you’re passionate about working with children and want to make a career out of looking after young ones, you might want to consider starting your own franchised nursery. Here, we take a look at the childcare industry in general, before turning our attention towards individual franchise opportunities.

The childcare industry

The childcare sector is an essential provider of care services for many families around the UK. There are approximately 3,000 nursery schools in the country. Between 2010 and 2014, the number of nurseries was steadily declining. However, figures for 2016 and 2017 have demonstrated that the sector has returned to small but significant growth.

This growth is necessary, as Department of Education statistics show that more two-year-olds are attending nursery than ever before. In part, this is because challenging economic conditions and developments in the way we think about traditional family roles are resulting in more families where both parents work.

Age also has an impact on nurseries’ share of the childcare market. For instance, individual childminders have a much larger share of the two and three-year-old markets, while nurseries' share of the four-year-old market is greater. This demonstrates the importance of targeting your services and ensuring you appeal to the right age group.

The benefits of a childcare

Childcare can be a controversial topic that understandably excites a considerable passion in parents. While some parents argue that the best thing you can do for your child is to allow them to grow and develop within a loving, family environment, others argue that nursery provides children with a significant opportunity to socialise. Both of these viewpoints are perfectly understandable. However, advocates of the nursery environment generally say that this type of childcare is beneficial because;

  • It helps children develop social skills and to interact with other children
  • It prepares a child for the routine of primary school
  • It gives children the opportunity to play
  • It allows parents to take some time off from childcare duties and to refresh and relax themselves

What makes a childcare franchise successful?

As a childcare franchise will be responsible for the care of a large number of young children, it’s essential that certain minimum standards are met. This includes the cleanliness and safety of the property, as well as the suitability of staff. However, if a children nursery franchise is to stand out amongst the competition, it must go further and do more.

For instance, the children in your care will need to be provided with a wide range of toys, games, and activities and be looked after in an environment that's warm, welcoming, and stimulating. The nursery will cater to special diets, as well as a wide range of educational needs. The staff will be calm, confident, and happy and classes will have an excellent teacher to child ratio. The vast majority of workers, if not all, should be qualified to look after the children. Finally, it's usually easy to tell an excellent nursery by the atmosphere you encounter when you visit. Are the children happy? Do they look stimulated and attentive? Do the staff appear as though they’re in control?

What makes a successful childcare franchisee?

To become a successful childcare franchisee, you’ll need to balance a wide variety of character traits and professional qualities. For instance, all franchisees will need basic business management skills to ensure that they’re capable of growing their franchise in the right way. Excellent communication skills are also vital, as is a love for children and childcare.

While there’s no single model for the perfect franchisee, there are common attributes. Chief amongst these are dedication, determination, and drive. If you aren’t fully committed to your franchise, there’s a good chance you won’t be able to sustain the long hours and hard work it takes to get the business off the ground.

However, you won’t need to bring all of these qualities to the job fully formed and thoroughly developed. Most franchises offer comprehensive training courses that ensure you’re fully prepared for the role. It’s important to remember that all franchises offer slightly different training programmes, so selecting the right franchise for you is essential. Here, we take a look at three different franchise offerings and explore how they differ.

Banana Moon

Banana Moon was established in 2006 and began franchising in 2010. There are now ten franchise units in the UK, and the business hopes that this number will continue to grow over the coming years. The franchise is renowned for its high-quality facilities and equipment, and parents are always impressed by the considerable amount of training franchisees to go through. A Banana Moon franchise will cost approximately £60,000 in total.

Sherpa Kids

Founded in 1996, in New Zealand, Sherpa Kids was set up to provide children and their parents with before and after school child care services that are fun, stimulating, and often educational. The phenomenal success of the franchise can be attributed to its emphasis on safety and security, as well as its many years of experience. All franchisees enrol on a seven-day training programme that imparts all the essentials required to operate the franchise, and ongoing support is provided. Franchisees will be expected to invest approximately £20,000 to buy the right to an exclusive territory.

Little Cherubs Day Nursery

Finally, Little Cherubs Day Nursery also offers franchising opportunities. Established to provide children with a daycare experience that's healthy, interesting, and conducive to personal growth. Franchisees are required to invest around £50,000 to get the business off the ground and will also need to pay a £21,995 franchise fee. An ongoing royalty fee of 8% of turnover is paid on a monthly basis. The franchise estimates that franchisees can expect a profit margin of approximately £80,000 a year once the business is up and running. However, this figure is dependent on a variety of factors and franchisees controlling overheads and driving greater efficiency.

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