Kixx chats with veterans-turned-franchisees, Neil and Chris Pope

Kixx franchise
Kixx The Kixx Mission is to positively impact every child at every opportunity.

Kixx provides a fantastic introduction to football for young children aged between 18 months to 10 years. Our academy sessions develop children’s physical and social skills, simultaneously promoting an active and healthy lifestyle.

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After 30 collective years in the armed forces, Neil and Chris now run Kixx Plymouth. The franchise network sat down with the pair to discuss the journey that led them to Kixx.

Neil and Chris opened Kixx Plymouth back in April 2021, and they’ve found the transition into a coaching career with the football franchise to be surprisingly seamless. In fact, they already have over 200 children attending their academies each week, and their experience has been SO successful that they’re launching a new location - Kixx Exeter - in 2022. 

In Neil’s words, “I joined the Army at 17 years old and following extensive training I became a ‘Radioman’ which is a specialist soldier responsible for military communications. [...] After serving over 20 years, I left the Army to focus on spending more time with my family, which coincidently led me to launching my own Kixx franchise.”

Neil then shared what led him to Kixx, explaining, “I coach my son's local football team and have for a while, so with having a little more free time, I did my research into children’s football academies and came across Kixx. Instantly I was so impressed by the brand, the values and how the academies looked online that I had to find out more. After several conversations and putting together a very thorough business plan, myself and my brother ‘joined forces’ to launch Kixx Plymouth.”

Chris also shared his story. He said, “I joined the Navy basically because my brother told me not to join the Army as I’d see more of the world with the Navy. [...] For some people coaching children can be daunting and running your own business can be scary. However, being in the Navy, in the Armed Forces, it provides you with very valuable skills and traits. One of them is being super organised with your planning and another is to ‘adapt and overcome’.”

Chris feels that “working with children and a brand like Kixx has been a natural transition”, though not without any problems. He’s confident, though, that he and his brother will “always adapt and overcome every problem [they] face”, something he feels they learned in the Armed Forces. Find out more about starting your own Kixx location via the franchise’s profile page, linked above.

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