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About Puddle Ducks
Puddle Ducks baby and child swimming classes began in 2002. Two new mums who had met at an antenatal group discovered a gap in the market for high-quality children’s swimming lessons that teach independent swimming from birth. With corporate backgrounds and a desire to pass on the joy of swimming to their offspring, the friends established Puddle Ducks, choosing the name because it was “aquatic, friendly and fun” – just like their classes!
Along with baby and pre-school swimming lessons for 0-4-year-olds, Puddle Ducks provides Aquanatal classes suitable for both pre and post-birth, and a swim academy for children age 4-10.
Baby classes focus on teaching children to be happy and safe in the water and the swim academy classes teach beautiful and efficient swim strokes along with water safety and lifesaving skills.
Aquanatal classes provide a great combination of relaxation and exercise for pregnant mums.
Puddle Ducks teachers are all highly trained and qualified and are experts at adapting activities to individual ability levels while also nurturing confidence. Class sizes are limited to keep the groups small, and songs and movement make them a fun experience for babies and children of all ages.
Puddle Ducks have taught thousands of children and babies to swim and feel safe and confident in the water. Programmes and teacher training are continually updated to reflect the latest advice and to keep the standards of teaching exceptionally high.
The Puddle Duck mission statement still reflects the owners’ passion and original ethos: “We want every child to love swimming, respect the water and swim beautifully. That’s why our standards are the highest and our approach is unique.”
How does a Puddle Ducks franchise work?
Puddle Ducks franchisees can choose whether to train to be a baby and pre-school swimming teacher, or to take on a management role and instead recruit and train a teacher for their classes. Franchisees are responsible for sourcing a pool, recruiting and managing marketing and customer care teams, attracting customers, business planning and financial management.
Puddle Ducks provides head office support from experienced franchise, marketing, retail and pool build experts to mentor franchisees and ensure their business runs smoothly and successfully.
How much does a Puddle Ducks franchise cost?
The Puddle Ducks franchise fee is £24,000 + VAT and gives franchise owners the licence to exclusively operate within their territory. Renewal is optional after five years at no additional cost.
Working capital should also be available for any upfront costs such as pool hire, and Puddle Ducks states that franchisees can sustain themselves for 12-24 months without drawing an income from the business.
Franchisees also pay a management service fee (10 per cent of sales), and a national marketing levy (one per cent of sales). Finding funding to cover the Puddle Ducks franchising cost.
Puddle Ducks is an approved franchisor with the franchise departments of many high street banks, making it easier to secure funding to cover the start-up costs of the business. The minimum personal investment required for a Puddle Ducks franchise is approximately £5,000 + VAT.
What do you get for your Puddle Ducks franchise fee?
Every Puddle Ducks franchisee becomes part of a nationally recognised, trusted brand and is given access to its proven business model. A state-of-the-art, fully integrated IT system (Shark) is included to provide full business visibility and help manage everything from booked pool time to customer records and accounting.
Franchisees also receive all the tools and training needed to utilise the system effectively, allowing them to make informed business decisions.
Puddle Ducks franchisees also benefit from ongoing business support provided by a team of experts at head office with one of the best franchisee to Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) staff ratios, at 0.5 FTE per franchisee. Franchisees also have access to insurance backed HR services as needed for complete peace of mind, and regular face-to-face support including annual technical visits and business health checks.
How much does a Puddle Ducks franchisee earn?
Puddle Ducks offers a successful business model and plenty of support to ensure that its franchisees are thriving and profitable, with many established franchisees reaching around 500 customers and realising sales of over £250,000 with profits of £100,000+. In 2017/18, 50 per cent of those franchises achieved sales income in excess of £400,000, with some managing 20 teachers who instruct 1,200 children each week across 16 pools.
Puddle Ducks note that individual profitability depends on various factors including effort levels, commercial skills and market conditions, but net profits of 19 per cent can be expected, depending on margins and overheads.
What marketing support is provided for Puddle Ducks franchisees?
Puddle Ducks franchisees receive marketing support including a state-of-the-art, responsive website and social media support along with national initiatives which include TV and digital marketing campaigns.
Do Puddle Ducks franchisees need industry experience?
Puddle Ducks hopes to partner with talented, passionate people with real business acumen. Current franchisees have come from a wide variety of backgrounds, with many leaving high-flying corporate careers in order to own a business with a better work/life balance.
Franchisees should have a positive, flexible attitude and a passion for swimming. Along with focus and a determination to succeed, people skills are important as franchise owners need to interact with both adults and children.
Will I meet other Puddle Ducks franchisees?
Yes, Puddle Ducks are proud of the fact that new operational and swimming programme innovations are driven by the whole network. There are opportunities to meet other franchisees throughout the year including an annual conference and regional franchise, marketing and technical meetings.
Can I list my Puddle Ducks franchise for sale?
Yes, Puddle Ducks will even help franchisees to sell their business to a suitable buyer.
Where are the territories that Puddle Ducks is looking to open new franchise locations?
Puddle Ducks currently have territories available in London (and surrounding area), Surrey, Cambridgeshire (and surrounding area), Buckinghamshire, Birmingham/West
Midlands/Warwickshire, Hampshire, Devon, South Wales and South Scotland. There is also a resale opportunity available in High Wycombe.
Why choose a Puddle Ducks franchise?
Owning a Puddle Ducks franchise can be a hugely fulfilling and rewarding career. Puddle Ducks swimming instructors provide an essential life skill to the small children they teach, and spend their day surrounded by happy, smiling babies. Franchisees can structure their hours to work flexibly around their home and family life and aren’t tied to a desk.
A Puddle Ducks franchise is a great way to enjoy the freedom of being the boss while being supported by an award-winning network.
How can I apply for a Puddle Ducks franchise?
Once you have received and read the prospectus, you are invited to have an initial chat with the franchisor to establish whether a suitable start-up or resale franchise territory is available. If a territory is available that you are interested in, a face-to-face meeting can be arranged either at head office in Cheshire or somewhere convenient for both parties.
Puddle Ducks also runs regular discovery days at ‘Duck HQ’. The days are free with no-obligation and give potential franchisees the chance to hear from the experts, look at territory maps and decide
whether to take things to the next stage.
For more information on opening a Puddle Ducks franchise, just fill in the web form on this page.
Request Free Information
Send a free enquiry to Puddle Ducks for further information!