After working as a fire extinguisher salesman, Steve Jackson set up Jackson Fire and Security in 1991, tapping into his experiences in a range of sectors to create a comprehensive fire safety company. “There was a definite demand for fire extinguisher installation and servicing, backed up by a legal requirement to have these in place,” recalls Jackson. “We have now grown our offering to include installation and maintenance of a range of different fire and security systems to businesses throughout the UK.”
The range of services offered by the company includes fire extinguishers, alarms, emergency lighting, access controls and fire and intruder alarm systems and CCTV, with maintenance plans available on all equipment. They have a team of engineers on hand to visit premises to provide and service fire and security equipment as well as ascertain whether premises comply with British legislation and standards.
The business was originally based at Jackson’s home, but has grown to include 10 regional franchises across the UK, including the Wirral, Bolton, Walsall, Warrington, Guildford, Cambridge, Teeside and Falkirk, as well as a head office in Mold, North Wales. Jackson comments: “We’re a national operator who likes to support businesses at a local level.”
The company employs 40 people across its branches, all operating to the highest standards and accreditations, including the National Security Inspectorate (NSI)‘s Gold Standard.
Jackson Fire & Security was the winner for business growth at the West Cheshire & North Wales Chamber of Commerce Annual Ball in 2017. It is also a member of the BFA.
The first steps to taking on a Jackson Fire & Security franchise is to attend one of its discovery days at its headquarters, during which the company will introduce you to the fire and security industry, your role in this management franchise, the training required, and the financial performance you can expect given the marketing and business development support available.
Jacksons provides a comprehensive training programme which covers every aspect of the business and which will develop core competencies and the confidence required to begin developing a thriving business.
Franchise territories are split up using postcode sectors and each territory has access to over 20,000 businesses. This does not include additional public sector and local authority buildings. Territory sizes have been carefully determined to provide each franchise owner the opportunity of developing a business of at least the same size as the franchisor’s current business. Jacksons offer to help their franchisees carry out thorough market research within their chosen territory to help them understand the types and volumes of business within their territory.
The franchise generates repeat business, as extinguishers require annual servicing (and, depending on type, replacing every five or 10 years) and security and fire alarms must be serviced every six months. Lucrative installation contracts can be entered into with expanding or new businesses, and providing monitored security services and 24/7 call outs can provide further income.
After an initial investment of £39,500 (plus VAT), there is a management fee of 9 per cent on turnover, plus an additional 2 per cent advertising fee, which is used to pay for marketing the brand nationwide. You will need a working capital of £30,000 to service staff salaries and any other business expenses in your first few months. You will need no previous industry experience or technical knowledge, but a sales or managerial background will be an advantage to anyone applying.
Jackson Fire & Security is a rapidly growing franchise operator providing fire protection and safety equipment throughout the UK. Its franchise holders manage their own schedules, aided by Jackson’s 20-strong office team who can take care of invoicing and credit control, and are supported by a system that is proven to work, receiving on-going training and support from industry professionals.
The initial investment will give you an exclusive territory; a 30-day induction training course; various courses in fire and security equipment; third party ISO accreditation; field training with Jackson engineers and surveyors; operations manuals; enhanced police national computer (PNC) and BS 7858: 2012 screening check.
Jackson Fire & Security offers assistance to launch your business, including an initial marketing launch campaign—including outbound sales campaign, direct mail, PR, SEO, PPC campaign, social media set-up—and a starter pack of personalised business stationary—business cards, a pull up stand, corporate brochure, and flyers; a telephone answering service and local website, invoicing support and credit control.
Jacksons provides an IT package including a laptop, software and PDA for your engineer, a CRM licence and BAFE registration for the first year, and ongoing technical support and advice for you and your staff.
Jacksons will also support you with market research and competitor analysis, a contribution to the business networking group of your choice, payment of an engineer agency recruitment fee and head office interview support for your first engineer. The company will pay a deposit for your first liveried and fitted commercial vehicle (deposit paid), ladders, test equipment, sound and voltage testers, uniform and safety clothing and initial stock with a retail value of up to £8,000.
Jackson Fire & Safety is a management franchise, so you will not need any technical skills or knowledge to run your business, as this will be the remit of your engineers and electrical sub-contractors, who will carry out the skilled work within the business.
However, Jackson’s induction course will provide you with technical training, accreditation and certification, which will allow you to gain a clear understanding of the legislation governing your business, equip you with the knowledge required to survey properties to current British standards, understand and meet your customers’ requirements, and help you manage your team. An ongoing programme of continuing professional development through structured training, support from a 20-strong head office team, and valuable experience will help you build a strong knowledge base within your business.
The Jackson Fire and Security franchise is recognised by the major banks in the UK that support ethical franchising. The company will support potential franchisees in securing sufficient funds for the launch of their business subject to their normal lending criteria. Jackson Fire and Security can introduce you to its partners at the banks who will help you structure your investment in the most beneficial way.
It may be possible to seek government-assisted funding through the Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) Scheme run by the British Business Bank. The EFG is a guarantee scheme to facilitate lending where there may be a lack of security available. The government provides a guarantee to the lender for 75 per cent of the loan amount. However, the borrower is still liable for the full amount. In return for underwriting the loan, the British Business Bank levies a 2 per cent annual premium payable by the borrower on the outstanding loan amount. This is a more expensive route for finance but may be an alternative should your funding application fail only because of a lack of security.
“We are the first Fire and Safety business to provide access to this lucrative market as a franchise offering,” say Jackson. “A Jackson franchise offers a potentially excellent return on investment, a strong and immediately recognisable brand and sterling reputation from our large and growing client base.
“With over 25 years experience in delivering industry leading service we are ideally positioned to help you meet the demand for a comprehensive fire and security solution in your area. Office and Facilities Managers are forced to seek out and manage a host of suppliers for reliable fire safety and security services. They need solutions and they would be delighted to find theirs from a single, professional, reliable provider. Jackson Fire and Security make their lives and jobs easier by providing these services to the highest standards from just one reliable source. You benefit immediately from our NSI and NACOSS Gold standard accreditations for fire and security.”
A Jackson Fire and Security franchise runs for seven years with a right to renew at the end of this initial term for no additional fee.
All non-domestic premises, with few exceptions, must have two Class A (water or foam) fire extinguishers (for paper and wood fires) per storey; most will also be required to have CO2 extinguishers (for electrical fires). Almost every business, managed property and public sector facility is also legally obliged to have a host of safety measures and equipment in place.
With around 2.7m businesses in the UK, the number of companies that will require fire safety solutions is sizeable and public sector expenditure on fire protection services has remained stable at around £2.8bn a year.
There is an increasing demand from the UK’s 25m homeowners for property protection and security is expanding this hidden industry.
The first steps to running a Jackson Fire and Security franchise begins with a Discovery Day at its offices just outside Chester, where you can find out about the franchise opportunities and meet the team. To find out more, or to request further information on franchising with Jackson Fire and Security, click on the ‘Send Enquiry’ button now.
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