Nick Dee Shapland, owner of ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services has reached the finals of the prestigious bfa (British Franchise Association) HSBC Franchisee of the Year Awards supported by Express Newspapers.
Nick a who runs the business from Mill Lane in Newbury, undertakes commercial contract cleaning in addition to cleaning the carpets, curtains and upholstery of both domestic and commercial customers across North and South Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire and North Hampshire.
From buying his franchise in 1991, Nick has built his ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services franchise into a multi-million pound business with over 450 staff, currently holding over 250 contracts with operations such as housing associations, financial institutions, medical practices, primary schools and car retailers.
Asked why he decided to buy a franchise operation rather than setting up in business by himself Nick says, "I was drawn by the fact that ServiceMaster was a global company and a brand leader in the cleaning market.
"The great thing about owning a franchise is that you can call on the expertise of the brand if required and because you are part of that huge brand you can bid for regional and national cleaning contracts with multi million pound businesses, who are happy to deal with you; this just wouldn’t happen if you started up in business by yourself."
Franchising in the UK is a genuine success story; according to the 2012 British Franchise Association (BFA)/NatWest survey, franchising contributed £13.4bn to the UK economy in 2011/12, an increase of 8% on the previous year.
Nick says, "Franchising is a huge industry in the UK, from the man-in-a-van operations to ours which turned over £4milion plus in 2012. Over the last 6 years we’ve developed a business culture of ‘Principles – People – Performance’ with a quality assurance management programme managed by our human resources and business services department and our processes have been audited to ISO9001/14001UKAS standards.’
When asked what winning the award would mean to him and his staff Nick replied, "It would be an acknowledgement by the franchise industry that we operate a highly professional business which I know would give all my staff a huge boost.
"As a franchise we promote the brand at all times, we follow the culture and ethics of the business to the letter and we’d like to thank ServiceMaster Limited for putting our business forward for this prestigious award."
Winners will be notified at a gala dinner on Thursday 3 October 2013 in Birmingham.