The Franchise Association of South Africa (FASA) is proud to honour the finalists and winners of its annual Awards for Excellence in Franchising. Thanks to the generous sponsorship from Absa, the awards were held at Summer Place in Sandton where guests were entertained by the delightful and very funny comedienne Krijay Govender and enjoyed a cocktail networking event.
John Baladakis, FASA’s Chairman had the honour of presenting the Hall of Fame award to Raymond Ackerman of Pick n Pay, who unfortunately could not be at the function but the award was accepted on his behalf by Stuart Duffield of Pick n Pay.
Raymond Ackerman is a man who has vigorously defended the entrepreneurial spirit of franchising at every turn and has made – at current count – 500 franchisees successful and often extremely wealthy business owners.
Raymond Ackerman built on a win/win formula helping individuals and staff (of which 100 of the 500 franchisees are BEE franchise owners) become successful Pick n Pay franchisees.
“From a humanitarian point of view, Mr Raymond Ackerman”, said John Baladakis when handing over the award, “as a man and as a leader – cannot be matched and that kindness has many a time landed in a franchisee’s lap.”
The categories honoured at the FASA Awards include:
FRANCHISOR OF THE YEAR
This most prestigious award celebrates the success of the franchisor who has made a significant impact in the marketplace and who has, through effective business management and marketing, achieved outstanding financial results and a significant growth in his sector.
THE WINNER: OBC CHICKEN & MEAT
Ask anyone at a taxi rank, township or CBD who OBC Chicken & Meat are and they will say ‘Ekhaya Lenkukhu! – The Home of Chicken!’ For thousands of people who criss-cross the country, commuting via taxis, going shopping in CBD’s or returning to their homeland to visit family and friends, the sight of an OBC Chicken & Meat retail store is a welcome sight to those who know and love this supermarket brand. OBC Chicken has been a part of the South African landscape for the past 28 years – its bright stores not only supply fresh and frozen chicken products but have expanded their range to include meat, fish, processed meat, dairy products and selected groceries.
RUNNER UP: CASH CONVERTERS
Cash Converters, as an international brand, is well on its way to being recognised as a world leader in the retailing of second-hand goods and provision of alternative financial services. In South Africa, Cash Converters provides an exciting, viable and innovative business opportunity to people from all walks of life with sufficient financial resources, ability and commitment to succeed.
RUNNER UP: CAR SERVICE CITY
In the Automotive Services industry, made up of specific car brand workshops and then a plethora of independent operators that service motorists from all walks of life, Car Service City strives to provide the best quality motor services through conveniently located workshops, at affordable prices, making their brand the consumer’s first choice for motor support. With 55 outlets and growing, Car Service City is fast becoming the brand of choice.
FRANCHISEE OF THE YEAR
This Award honours a franchisee’s success in running his/her own business and contributing to the overall success of the franchisor. These franchisees form the backbone of any franchise concept and are the ‘face’ of the franchise brand.
THE WINNER: LARA OELOFSE OF MIKE’S KITCHEN IN SPRINGS
The Springs Mike’s Kitchen, under the ownership of Lara Oelofse, a dynamic, humane and professional woman, continues to outperform her peers. She has been a consistent achiever year after year relying on a combination of her canny operations abilities and technical skills balanced with being a strong brand ambassador who consistently markets and promotes the brand.
THE RUNNER UP: REON KOCKJEU OF ON-TAP – East London
Reon has been a successful franchisee for 18 years and believes that ‘if you don’t have a vision driving you forward, you are dead in the water’. That vision, which is to dominate the plumbing industry in the Eastern Cape, stems from being passionate about his business and having exceptional partners in both his family of staff and his loyal customers.
THE RUNNER UP: ALEYCIA EKSTEEN OF PLACECOL, SILVERLAKES, PRETORIA
As one of Placecol’s top performers, Aleycia Eksteen has achieved double digit growth over the last couple of years, has strong leadership qualities and always sets a good example to her employees. She takes great pride in seeing her personal and business growth evolve over the years and sees it as a privilege to be able to grow with such a powerful brand as Placecol.
NEWCOMER FRANCHISOR OF THE YEAR
This category honours the innovative entrepreneurship of new entrants into the franchise fold. It celebrates those entrepreneurs who are in tune with shifts in demographics, lifestyles and workplaces and who throw that first stone that will undoubtedly cause the ripple effect in consumer markets and be the next big franchise brand.
THE WINNER: MIDEK PAINT DIRECT
Midek Paint Direct is a trusted supplier of choice, delivering on customer service excellence and consistent quality paint delivered through their current franchised stores. With a 5-year plan in place to achieve 2% of the decorative paint market which amounts to 100 million rand, Midek Paint and Midek Paint Contractors are set to make their mark in the marketplace.
RUNNER UP: SHERPA KIDS
An international brand with operations in New Zealand, Australia, England, Ireland and Canada, Sherpa Kids provides a creative, engaging, fun-filled, safe and secure environment for the Before School, After School and Holiday care service. True to their name, Sherpa Kids, in the same way mountaineers use skills and knowledge of the Sherpa people to guide them safely to their summit, has a genuine passion for delivering a quality, structured and safe service built on a solid business platform. This brand has already established 12 thriving franchise outlets in South Africa.
RUNNER UP: BODYTEC
Making waves in the body fitness market is BODYTEC, which boasts 8 successful franchise outlets offering their clients a time-efficient strength workout in a contemporary environment using the best technology available. The concept, which originates in Germany, focuses on the sustainability and profitability of each individual studio through strong head office support.
FRANCHISOR: LEADING DEVELOPER OF EMERGING ENTREPRENEURS
This award encourages the development of emerging franchisors and on the need to empower the small business sector and encourages the franchise ethic in emerging markets.
THE WINNER: HOT DOG CAFE
The award was won by Hot Dog Cafe, a franchise company that is streets ahead in forging a pioneering path in BEE transformation. The proven Hot Dog Cafe model promotes entrepreneurial culture, skills development and the creation of jobs. Qualifying previously disadvantaged candidates are given the opportunity, by way of various funding initiatives, to be trained and given skills to not only enter the ranks of the formally employed but more importantly are given the opportunity to become entrepreneurs with the ongoing guidance and support within the franchise environment.
JOB CREATOR FRANCHISOR OF THE YEAR
The Job Creator of the Year Award recognises those franchisors who, through the expansion of their franchise brand by way of their network of franchisees, contribute extensively to job creation. The franchisor’s efforts in the transfer of skills and training are also paramount as is their entrepreneurial encouragement and job creation through enterprise development.
THE WINNER: CAR SERVICE CITY
Whether it’s the mechanics working on the cars, the car washers and workshop assistants or the ad-hoc jobs given to those that hand out leaflets at traffic intersections, the support given to the almost 1 000 employed at Car Service City outlets forms the foundation of their business success. Skills development, performance rewards and participation in a safe and a healthy working environment are all part of the Car Service City ethos.
THE RUNNER UP: HOT DOG CAFE
With a mandate to build a franchise network serving the best hot dogs, pies and other quality fast food by their empowering franchisees, staff and other stakeholders through ethical and honest business practices, Hot Dog Cafe ranks job creation high on its list of priorities. Its cadet programmes take in unemployed previously disadvantaged individuals and give them on-the-job training. They then either are given the opportunity for ownership or are given jobs within the organisation.
THE RUNNER UP: THE BRAZEN HEAD
As a pub and restaurant brand with a growing footprint in the food service industry, The Brazen Head takes a balanced approach towards people, quality and profits. With each new store opening, the aim is to develop and retain a superior team of franchisees, managers and staff. To this end, an operations manager and a chef are dedicated to the very best in menu training, waiter and barman training and franchisees are encouraged to provide incentives to their staff.
BRAND BUILDER OF THE YEAR
The objective of this award is to give recognition to the companies that elevate and grow their brand through the successful implementation of sound marketing strategies. The focus is on innovation and effective marketing rather than the size of the brand’s marketing budget.
THE WINNER: KING PIE
With a brand promise that in the ‘King Pie Kingdom everyone is Royalty’ the marketing strategy is to a target market that requires convenience, wholesome food that makes their lives easier in an affordable, satisfying and convenient way. This is achieved through a highly developed and well-researched brand strategy which includes call to action, national promotional campaigns every 7 weeks which are supported by above the line advertising in defined media channels.
THE RUNNER UP: CAR SERVICE CITY
Through clever marketing and top-of-mind promotions, Car Service City have managed to differentiate themselves from other car servicing agents, as well as independent workshops to become a trusted, recognised car servicing brand. Their key brand messages are communicated with effective above-the-line, outdoor advertising, a well-supported on-line presence as well as in-store marketing. This is all re-enforced by committed franchisees and their staff who deliver on the brand promise and carry it through to the customers they service.
THE RUNNER UP: PLACECOL
A true South African franchise brand offering, the Placecol skin care brand celebrated its 35th anniversary with their brand promise to ‘Live Life Now’ and their ‘Be Confident’ theme. The Placecol marketing message is that beauty is no longer a guilty treat – it is a tool for living life successfully. These positive messages are delivered through magazines, national competitions, promotional vouchers and loyalty programmes both in print and on-line.