Tried and tested

Want to kick-start a new business venture, but with the confidence that comes with knowing you will benefit from an established customer base and quality products? A franchise model with a respected brand could be right up your street, writes Gillian Hamill


Brand Central

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17 April 2018

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Operating a franchise has many advantages for those who are considering starting a new business venture, with many successful established brands using the model to expand throughout both Ireland and globally. For a start, as pointed out by the Irish Franchise Show which will take place in Dublin’s RDS from 7 – 8 September, a franchisee automatically receives a tried and tested product or service, a dominant online presence, a loyal customer base and ready-built relationships with suppliers.

The Irish Franchise Association (IFA) has also compiled a comprehensive list of benefits. These include the fact that larger, well-established franchise businesses will often have national advertising campaigns and a solid trading name. Good franchise businesses will offer comprehensive training programmes in sales and, indeed, all business skills. What’s more, franchisors provide up-to-date operational guidelines in the form of an operations manual as a reference document for the franchisees.

Entrepreneurs can also benefit from economies of scale through the franchise model. According to the IFA, good franchise businesses can help secure funding for your investment as well as, for example, discounted bulk-purchases for outlets when you are in operation. The franchisors who have earnt respect throughout the foodservice industry also provide support to their franchisees and the franchise network on a pre-determined basis.

Fact file: Freshii

Number of outlets nationwide:

12 in Ireland; approaching 400 globally.

Wholesale partner:

Varies by market – Ireland (Pallas \ Zeus \ Hendersons \ Bell Lane).

Head office:

Toronto, Canada

Date established: 2005 in Canada, 2015 in Ireland.

Growth: Strong; Freshii is the fastest growing brand in the sector with 400 outlets and 150 new store openings per annum globally.


Healthy, energising food.


‘Eat. Energize’.

Freshii is a fast-growing restaurant brand at the forefront of the global health and wellness movement, pioneering the new “healthy fast food” category. With a tasty and diverse menu of hot burritos, bowls, soups along with salads and wraps, Freshii appeals to a broad spectrum of customers across many demographics, particularly the millennial generation. Freshii has been ranked the fastest growing multinational chain restaurant in the world and continues to grow at a faster pace than another global restaurant chain did in its early years.

Freshii isn’t about quinoa or kale or cucumbers – it’s about making health and wellness accessible to all. Subsequently, as health trends evolve throughout society, the Freshii brand is uniquely positioned to evolve with them.

Freshii has highly experienced, quality management across its Irish stores and the company is leading its industry with initiatives that are good for the planet. Freshii’s eco-friendly packaging, low usage of electricity and flexible, environmentally friendly store designs are evidence of its commitment to a greener environment.

Fact file: Handprint Coffee

Number of outlets nationwide: Two

Wholesale partners:

Bell Lane Coffee Co

Bretzel Bakery

Pallas Foods

Head office:

Ballsbridge, Dublin 4

Date established: 2017

Growth: Strong

Specialty: Great tasting, environmentally friendly coffee.

Handprint Coffee is a new Irish environmentally friendly coffee brand and café, led by Bell Lane, Ireland’s leading artisan specialty coffee roastery.

Sourcing only sustainable coffee from small quality-driven producers, Handprint roasts its coffee by hand and trains baristas at its centre of excellence. Every cup of coffee is served in a fully compostable cup and packaging. Handprint also serves a range of pastries and tray bakes, which are locally sourced and delivered daily.

Bell Lane has been roasting coffee since 2012, developing blends and roasting single origin coffee to optimise flavour on its custom hand-built Giesen coffee roaster. Coffee roasting is easy to learn but takes years to perfect and the team at Bell Lane has over 30 years’ experience in roasting. Bell Lane Coffee has also produced many award-winning espresso blends to date.

Handprint Coffee was developed out of the desire to have a consistent coffee experience, training baristas to deliver coffee at a level that only speciality cafés can achieve. Handprint believes that this knowledge is not a secret but a resource to grow your business for the future.

There are already two stores in Dublin; Point Square and Sandyford, with future franchise options available for suitable partners.

Interested parties should contact: Cormac Manning or Dave O’Donoghue at

Fact file: Freshly Chopped


Head office: 13-15 Main Street, Fairview, Dublin 3

Number of outlets nationwide: 41


Date established? 2012

Growth: Grown from one store to 41 stores in six years

Specialty: Healthy, fast food

Motto: ‘Nutritious food served fast’.

At Freshly Chopped, the team is hungry to bring customers fresh, clean and nutritious food, served quickly. The company’s mission is to offer simple and tasty ways to easily add healthy food choices into a busy day.

Quality and fresh produce is prepared from a personal choice of ingredients – with the ‘Create Your Own’ menu – or from a full menu at its deli counter. The customer’s selected salad is then sent to its open-theatre chopping stations to be freshly chopped and dressed by super-star ‘Choppers’. Fresh, healthy food, created in minimum time.

Freshly Chopped was born in Ireland through a pure love of health and fitness, with a true lack of nutritious food available to people wanting to live a healthy lifestyle on-the-go. The name Chopped is derived from the brand’s unique way of preparing food using its super-hero mezzaluna knife to provide fast healthy food over the counter.

Fact file: Zambrero

Head office: Sydney, Australia

Number of outlets nationwide: Five

Wholesale partner: Lynas

Date established: 2005 in Australia, 2016 in Ireland.

Growth: Globally, Zambrero has opened nearly 200 restaurants in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Ireland and America in the past month. The real growth of the company has happened over the past three years by opening more than 50 restaurants a year in that period.

Specialty: Fresh, healthy, modern Mexican food.

Motto: ‘Mexican with a mission’.

Zambrero is Australia’s largest Mexican restaurant franchise. Providing fresh, healthy, and flavoursome food, this is Mexican with a mission – to combat world hunger.

Zambrero achieves its humanitarian aims through its Plate 4 Plate initiative. For every burrito or bowl Zambrero sells every day of the year, a meal is donated to someone in need via Zambrero’s distribution partners Rise Against Hunger. Zambrero, thanks to its customers, has donated more than 21 million meals around the world since it was founded in 2005 by Dr. Sam Prince.







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