Q&A: Does Creams Franchise in the UK?

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Creams cafe franchise information

Who doesn’t love crepes, waffles and sundaes? If you’ve always dreamed of starting your own ice cream shop or dessert business, you might be interested in finding out about franchise opportunities in the food service industry. Here, we’re asking: does Creams franchise?

Creams is the UK’s top dessert parlour, with a mouthwatering range of “WOW desserts”, from crepes and waffles, to sundaes, cookie doughs and freak shakes. It also sells 24 different gelato and sorbet flavours, and a selection of decadent toppings. 

Today, there are Creams branches across the UK, all the way from Glasgow to Brighton. 


Does Creams franchise? 


Yes! Creams is offering you the chance to set up your very own dessert and ice cream business under its recognisable branding. Keep reading to find out more about the opportunity. 


History of Creams


Back in 1998, Adam Marni and Balal Aqil had a dream of starting an innovative ice cream business offering customers quality desserts in a unique environment. But it would be another 10 years before that dream became a reality. In the meantime, they made several trips to Italy to finetune their authentic gelato ice cream recipe until, in 2008, Creams Cafe was born. 


In 2012, the pair introduced the Creams Gelato Factory, followed by two more Creams Cafe units the following year. Within a matter of months, Adam and Balal were able to significantly ramp up their expansion efforts. 2014 saw a total of 11 new stores launched in the UK, and 10 more were established in 2015. 


A further 19 outlets opened their doors in 2016. A year later, the franchise unveiled the Creams Foundation, as well as its own children’s menu and bubble waffle options. In 2018, Creams launched 23 additional branches and established a partnership with Thorpe Park. 


Exclusive bubble tea and vegan menus followed in 2019, and 2020 brought an alliance with the Cheesecake Factory. The brand is also working with the Italian Aroma Coffee Company, and has created a blend to be used exclusively in Creams cafes. 

Starting a Creams franchise unit


The Creams franchise team provides a comprehensive training programme, as well as ongoing support, so investors don’t need any prior experience to start their own business under the brand. 


However, there are several conditions franchisees must meet once they come on board. Investors are asked to secure a site of around 1,500 square feet in a location with high customer footfall. The area should be home to diverse socio-economic groups, as well as a good range of other businesses, including restaurants and entertainment venues. Plus, you should aim to choose a property with a nearby car park or good transport links. 


As part of the pre-launch process, you’ll work with the franchisor to recruit an average of 16 employees, who will support you in the running of your Creams franchise unit. Although you don’t need experience in the food service industry, having a background in people management will help you develop the leadership skills required to manage your team. 

Becoming a Creams franchisee:


You can kick off the process by completing an application form on the Creams website. Once it’s been submitted, a representative of the franchise will get in touch with you. An initial conversation will give you the chance to ask questions and get a feel for whether the opportunity is for you. 


The next step in the process is visiting the business’s headquarters and reviewing the franchise paperwork. At this stage, it’s important you consult a specialist franchise solicitor to make sure you fully understand your future obligations as a Creams franchisee. 


While the joining process typically takes two to three months, the total duration will depend on how long it takes to find a suitable property in your area.


How much you need to invest:


Your total spend will vary, depending on the specific requirements of your selected property, but most Creams franchisees make an investment of between £285,950 and £364,450 plus VAT. This sum includes the cost of all fixtures and fittings, as well as signage, estate agency and legal fees, staff training and project management costs.


Franchisees must also make monthly payments calculated from gross sales totals, including a five-percent royalty fee and a one-percent marketing fee. 


What you get for your investment: 


Creams is passionate about helping its franchisees build the best possible businesses, so it is dedicated to providing guidance and support throughout their franchising journeys. 


Before you open your unit, the Creams franchise team will help you find the perfect site, develop a business plan and launch campaign, and train your team. They’ll also provide comprehensive operation manuals and access to marketing tools and collateral. 


Once you’ve completed initial training and celebrated launch day, you’ll also benefit from ongoing franchise support. Creams provides regular refresher training opportunities, as well as guidance with operations, marketing and menu and website development. 


Taking advantage of Creams franchise opportunities


If you’re passionate about creating indulgent desserts and eye-catching milkshakes, Creams can offer you the chance to gain stability as a business owner. By working under its recognisable brand and proven strategies, you can set up a profitable unit with low levels of risk. 


To find a run-down of the information you need to get started, visit our Creams franchise profile page or head to the business’s own website. 


If Creams’ franchise opportunity isn’t quite right for you, don’t despair - there are plenty of other fantastic options in the food service industry. Here at Point Franchise, you can browse investment openings across a huge range of sub-sectors. 


Take a look at the dessert franchises on the lookout for new franchisees or narrow down your choice to ice cream companies. Alternatively, see our entire food franchise catalogue to find even more investment opportunities. 

>> Read more articles on the Dessert sector

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