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Downturn victim goes it alone with franchise.

Byline: Karen Dent

AFORMER roofer left out of work by the downturn in the construction industry has become his own boss after signing up for a 'try before you buy' bin-cleaning franchise.

Craig Richardson was out of work for three months before he found out about the County Durham-based Be Franchising scheme, which allows people to start a franchise then buy the business once it is running profitably.

Mr Richardson, from Consett, has signed up more than 400 customers in the three months since he took on the VIP Bin Cleaning service for Derwentside, and is aiming to buy the franchise in the next 12 months.

He said: "As things slowed down in the building trade so did the demand for roofing services and I was left looking for work and taking on any temporary jobs going.

"It was at the local job centre that I saw the opportunity with Be Franchising and applied to take on the Derwentside franchise on a 'try before you buy' basis.

"I went along for an interview and was delighted when I got a call to say I had been successful."

Be Franchising is a not-for-profit company run by Be Enterprising, the area's Local Enterprise Growth Initiative (LEGI).

It bought the North East master licence for the VIP Bin Cleaning operation, which arrived in the UK in 1997, and has franchisees worldwide. Be Franchising employs people who want to start their own business and helps them to secure funding to from the banks to pay for the franchise.

Graham Mylchreest from Be Franchising said: "We support people to give them the opportunity to work towards owning and running their own franchise business.

"Craig is a great example of this. He is extremely committed to building a successful business and we're certain he will be able to take on and grow the Derwentside franchise once he gains more experience and wins more work."

Mr Richardson is currently working up to 48 hours a week cleaning wheelie bins, garden bins and recycling bins from a mobile unit, which recycles the water used in the process. He said: "I'm working really hard to make the franchise a success and once I have learned more about running the operation I would love to take it on as my own."


HARD WORKING Craig Richardson aims to buy his franchise in the next 12 months.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 26, 2009
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