Hit the Nail on the Head with Our Top Three Tool Franchises

16/04/2018 17:25 | Start a business

Top 3 tool franchise opportunities uk

If you’re considering opening a business that services the DIY, engineering and construction industries by providing high-quality tools at competitive prices, you may want to take a look at our top three tool franchises. All three of our chosen franchises show a great deal of promise and have the potential to become highly profitable ventures for an individual with a sound mind for business. Each franchise also offers franchisees something a little different, ensuring there's an option for every type of investor.

The best tool franchise opportunities in 2018

Mr Arkwright’s Tool Emporium

Mr Arkwright’s Tool Emporium aims to bring life back to the high street by taking the concept of a traditional, service-first, community-orientated ironmongers and updating it for the modern marketplace. In this respect, it’s something of a unique proposition. With the current DIY sector defined mainly by faceless and homogenous superstores situated on industrial parks at the edge of town, Dr Arkwright’s is a tool franchise with a difference. It emphasises its industry expertise, a smaller, more personable atmosphere, and an extensive range of products and goods, and has successfully found itself a gap in the market that’s ready to be exploited.

However, franchisees will be not only able to rely on the franchise’s clever appeal to British nostalgia and its association with the iconic Open All Hours hardware store, but also a great deal of support from the franchisor. Stocking over 50,000 tools, at prices that match those of the big hardware chains, the average franchisee can expect an annual turnover of over £200,000 and a gross profit margin of 60%.

Training is provided to ensure the highest of standards are maintained across the franchise and marketing materials are produced to advertise the opening of each new shop. The initial investment in the franchise is recommended to be between £45,000 and £80,000, and this covers the franchise fee, license fee and other start-up costs including the inventory supply chain, full shop fitting, EPOS system and a CCTV system. All of this makes Mr Arkwright’s Tool Emporium a stand-out opportunity for potential franchisees and one of our top tool franchises of the moment.

Mac Tools

Mac Tools is a van-based business that centres its operations around the distribution of high-quality hand and power tools to automotive outlets, car dealerships, garages, manufacturers and engineering companies. Part of the global Stanley Black & Decker organisation, it has the backing of one of the most respected tool manufacturers in the world. With over 170 existing franchise outlets distributing a range of high-quality, low-cost tools to businesses around the country, this could be considered one of the best franchises to own on the market.

Future Mac Tools franchisees receive guidance, training and ongoing support from dedicated Mac Tools teams - who have years of experience and a unique insight into the franchise model. An initial training period provides franchisees with the necessary skills required for the role, while the continuous development of new tools and technology ensures stock stays relevant and demand high. One of the key benefits of joining the franchise is the sizeable public presence enjoyed by the business. Spots on popular TV shows, sponsorship deals, and clever marketing campaigns have ensured that the brand name and image is well known throughout the industry and also amongst the general public.

The initial cost of signing up for Mac Tools is tiered to allow for greater versatility and to encourage suitable candidates with varying levels of financial backing to apply. The minimum start-up investment currently sits at £5,000, though the typical start-up investment is roughly £50,000. Once up and running, the average Mac Tools franchisee can expect a first-year annual turnover of £165,000 and the potential for a six-figure salary in the future.


Snap-on has refined its business and franchise model over 90 years of trading to become one of the most well-respected and widespread tool distributors in the business. Like Mac Tools, this is a van-based franchise, with each unit gaining access to a protected territory of around 220 fully surveyed professional tool users, all of whom are potential customers. Renowned for stocking over 22,000 high-quality products and delivering them direct to the doors of mechanics, car dealerships, marinas, and airports, Snap-on is a top tool franchise for those who want to benefit from an established market presence.

Training for new franchisees is performed at the UK Head Office in Kettering and, once complete, the Snap-on franchise development teams provide ongoing support for the first year of business. After the first year, a dedicated sales advisor is attached to your franchise for further sales support, training and advice. Snap-on also works hard throughout the year to provide additional training programmes in the form of open seminars, workshops and an annual conference.

For those looking to sign up, an initial investment of around £74,000 is required. This can be reduced to a personal investment of just £16,037 if potential franchisees finance their new business using Snap-on’s in-house finance and banking programme. This allows the remainder of the initial investment to be paid over a six-year period, with a three-month hold on repayments as your business gets off the ground. This tried and tested franchise model makes Snap-on one of the most attractive tool franchises around for those looking to build their own business and be their own boss.


While there are several tool franchises out there for potential franchisees to consider, few can match the potential rewards of the three we have selected. Opening a franchise involves making some difficult decisions and, if you’re passionate about tools being your trade, choosing between Mr Arkwright’s, Mac Tools, and Snap-on will require careful consideration. As with any franchise, it's essential that you fully understand the complexities of a franchisee's relationship with the franchisor, do your own independent research, and meet face-to-face with those you’re hoping to partner with. However, if you do opt for one of our top 3 tool franchises, chances are you’ll have the backing to make it a runaway success.

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