Q&A: Does Tim Hortons Franchise in the UK?

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Tim Hortons franchise

If you've ever visited Canada, chances are you've seen or tried a Tim Hortons coffee. As the iconic quick service restaurant chain expands its operations in the UK, we thought it would be a good idea to find out a bit more about the brand and explore whether its adopted the franchise model.

Tim Hortons is a coffee and doughnuts business with a long history. Founded in 1964 by ice hockey legend Tim Horton, its become synonymous with Canadian coffee culture. After quickly developing a large local following it has since expanded into numerous markets across the globe and operates from around 4,846 locations. But can your own a Tim Hortons franchise in the UK?

Does Tim Hortons franchise in the UK?

Yes, it does. According to its website, Tim Hortons is currently looking for ambitious entrepreneurs who want to bring its fresh coffee and delicious doughnuts to even more members of the British public.

If youre a coffee fanatic, incredibly hardworking, and dedicated to providing exceptional customer service, youre on the way to having what it takes to run your own successful Tim Hortons franchise.

History of Tim Hortons

In 1967 the Tim Hortons business had welcomed its first franchisee and, 10 years later, the franchise had grown enough to expand into francophone Quebec. In 1984, Tim Hortons jumped across the border and opened its first US location in Tonawanda, New York.

By the early 1990s, Tim Hortons had 500 restaurants in operation. However, this was a decade of significant growth for the business and, after merging with Wendy's International Inc., the franchise opened its 1,000th restaurant in 1995. For Tim Hortons businesses, the 1980s and 1990s were a time of innovation and change, as new products and promotional campaigns were introduced on a regular basis. At the turn of the millennium, Tim Hortons opened its 2,000th restaurant.

In 2017, the Tim Hortons franchise made the journey across the Atlantic and opened its first UK restaurant in Glasgow. Today, the business has 17 restaurants across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and is actively looking for individuals to facilitate further expansion.

Did you know? We drink over 400 billion cups of coffee a year across the globe and 70 million every day in the UK

Starting a Tim Hortons franchise unit

As one of the most iconic companies in Canada, Tim Hortons can rely on a vast amount of cultural capital in its home country. However, its unlikely that this will translate quite so strongly into the UK market.

However, if the franchise can offer a unique experience, provide customers with high-quality, affordable foodstuffs and carve a niche for itself, there's every chance that it will still be incredibly successful here.

  • Becoming a Tim Hortons franchisee: Youll been to be a confident communicator and natural leader to be able accepted onto the franchise programme. Its also important to have experience in the multi-site Food & Beverage industry.
  • How much you need to invest: Youll need to have liquid assets of at least £1 million and be able to secure your own financing.
  • What you get for your investment: In return for their investment, franchisees are granted the rights to trade under the Tim Hortons name and use its brand and trademarks. Theyll also be offered access to a world-class support system that guides the franchisee through the set-up process and helps to grow and develop the business. This includes assistance when selecting a location, fitting the restaurant and preparing for launch.

Coffee shop industry in the UK

We drink over 400 billion cups of coffee a year across the globe and 70 million every day in the UK. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the UK coffee shop sector is worth an impressive £10.1 billion and has experienced 20 years of growth. If you want to capitalise on our addiction to the caffeinated cups of goodness, check out our franchise opportunities below.

Alternative Franchise Investments

If youre hoping to launch a business in the coffee sector but dont access to the capital investment the Tim Hortons asks for, we have plenty of other coffee shop franchises to choose from. Lets take a look at four of our favourite opportunities.

1. Esquires Coffee

This is a franchise that cares as much about the local community as its profit margins. In 2017, it was listed as the UKs second most ethical coffee company and top coffee franchise by Elite Franchise.

Like Tim Hortons, Esquires Coffee started its journey in Canada. It first opened its doors in 1993 and, within seven years, it had expanded into the UK and Europe. This meant it was an internationally recognised brand by the turn of the century.

Today, it has established over 50 coffee shops across the UK and Ireland, which contribute to a total brand turnover of just under £9 billion. The chain has earned a loyal customer base by pledging not to harm the planet or those involved in the companys supply chain in the name of profit. It also promotes a community ethos, which has led to the brand being described as honest, quirky and indie.

  • Becoming an Esquires Coffee franchisee: Stores can be launched in the form of small kiosks or stands in busy commercial areas or larger, two-storey cafes of up to 2,000 square feet. Its important that you share the brand philosophy and are business minded.
  • How much you need to invest: Of course, the investment fee needed to establish an Esquires Coffee store will depend upon the size of the outlet, but you should be prepared to pay around £225,000. This will go towards property agency fees, store design and fit-out, furniture and equipment. An additional payment of £19,500 will cover franchisee fees.
  • What you get for your investment: If you choose to franchise with this international coffee shop business, you will be guided through the process of opening your own store. Youll get training and support in site selection, store design, lease negotiation and marketing.

2. Dunkin Donuts

Dunkin Donuts offers a similar product selection to Tim Hortons. Specialising in coffee and doughnuts, this franchise serves over five million customers a day and sells over 30 cups of coffee a second.

The business was launched in 1950 by Bill Rosenburg, who opened his first shop in Massachusetts. Since then, Dunkin Donuts has established a network of more than 11,000 stores spread across 31 countries and racked up almost 70 years of industry experience and 120 years of combined franchising experience.

  • Becoming a Dunkin Donuts franchisee: Youll need to be prepared to open at least 20 restaurants over a certain time period and have previous experience in the Food & Beverage industry.
  • How much you need to invest: If you fancy taking a bite out of a Dunkin Donuts franchise, youll need to have around £1,200,000 in liquid assets, as well as a net worth of £2,300,000.
  • What you get for your investment: Once youre on board, the franchise will provide you with the rights to use its internationally recognisable branding and world-class tools and resources. This means youll be able to attract customers to your business and offer them the same positive experience they would expect to find at any Dunkin Donuts outlet.

3. Creams Caf

The dessert parlour, known for its gelato-flavoured ice cream and coffee, takes the 1950s American-diner taste and combines it with an Italian twist. The company have even added a vegan menu, giving customers with all dietary requirements a chance to taste their shakes and other desserts.

  • Becoming a Creams Caf franchisee: Of course, catering and retailing experience is extremely helpful when it comes to becoming a franchisee in this industry, but the company does offer training and consistent support throughout, so previous knowledge is not essential. Youll also need to be prepared to pay a five percent royalty fee and a 1 percent marketing fee of gross sales.
  • How much you need to invest: To become a Creams Caf franchisee, you will need you to invest £14,950 + VAT for each franchise unit and make an overall minimum investment of £250,000.
  • What you get for your investment: As a franchisee, youll receive all the different kinds of training you need to be prepared before and during your store opening, such as a 21 intensive-day course at the Creams Academy. Youll get a certificate for your work, and on top of that support and advice on recruitment and marketing. Refresher classes are even available to master the running of your business.

4. Coffee Blue

This mobile coffee van franchise offers comforting hot drinks and a selection of food products everywhere from festivals to offices.

  • Becoming a Coffee Blue franchisee: If you have great communication skills, are business-focused and ambitious, youre encouraged to get in touch.
  • How much you need to invest: This low-cost franchise asks for just £16,950 to get the ball rolling.
  • What you get for your investment: Barista training, NCASS (National Caterers Association) certification, the option of rent-to-buy, and all the training you need.

Start your own coffee shop franchise

Dont fancy any of these five coffee shop businesses? Click here to find out whether Caffe Nero franchises in the UK.

>> Read more articles on the Coffee, Cafe & Coffee Shop sector

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