Mac Tools provides Stephen with ongoing marketing and business support to achieve this goal. His success showcases that with commitment to your customers, your business and Mac Tools, success is achievable, no matter the economic odds. Stephen is already fitting out a bigger 7.5 ton truck to move his business to the next level. So the future truly looks bright for this young Mac Tools franchisee.
No ‘Mickey Mouse’ business
Due diligence is key when identifying the right franchise for you. Mark Willgoose took to the wheel of his Mac Tools van in June 2013 at the age of 29. He has recently become the proud father of Lola and decided it was time for a change in career to gain more flexibility to spend time with his young family. Mark worked as a sales manager at Ben Weaver Commercials Sheffield for seven years prior to joining Mac Tools.
“Darren Lee, the Mac Tools franchisee in Sheffield, came to my previous workplace every week,” he says. “One day he asked me if I could see myself becoming a Mac Tools franchisee as well. I had never thought about starting my own business before and wasn’t aware of the concept of franchising either. So I asked him questions every week when he came round and the more I learned about the tools and Mac Tools, the more I thought this would be a great opportunity to be in charge of my own destiny and work for myself.
“I started to do some more research and called mechanics in my area to ask them what they thought about Mac Tools in comparison to its competitors. I also did some research online and looked at the company’s accreditations with the British Franchise Association. I just wanted to make sure I was making the right decision and didn’t join a ‘Mickey Mouse’ business.
“But everywhere I looked Mac Tools came across as a stable organisation and the product range and what’s available to buy for the consumer is very good. The Mac Tools package is a great opportunity to earn a good living. So it only took me about a week to make up my mind and join Mac Tools.” Mac Tools is part of Stanley Black & Decker, a £7 billion-plus global organisation employing over 30,000 people worldwide and owner of the world famous Facom, Britool Expert and DeWalt brands. Over the last three years Mac Tools has achieved 25 per cent year on year growth in what is considered to be a flat market.
The Mac Tools line consists of over 18,000 professional tools, including screwdrivers, ratchets, wrenches and assorted air tools, as well as its own toolboxes. Franchisees like Mark are trusted distributors of what many consider to be the best quality tools on the market to customers such as car dealerships, automotive repair shops, manufacturing units and engineering companies.
After purchasing the Chesterfield territory, Mark completed Mac Tools’ comprehensive training programme and then received hands-on support from his Regional Franchise Manager for the first two weeks out on the road, as well as regular support from a dedicated team of staff at the European headquarters in Sheffield.
“The training was very good and the ongoing support is brilliant, no one is ever more than a phone call away,” Mark says. “I can phone other franchisees and customer services if I need help with anything. They can help you with everything and are very quick. I feel very welcome and you don’t realise how much you have learned until you put it into practice.”
Number one choice
Mac Tools launched in the UK in 1990, where it quickly became the number one choice for professionals all over the country. The company has over 115 franchisees and a dedicated head office team, and is still recognised as one of the top brands in the country, known for having new and innovative products - a brand you can trust at a price you can afford.
“If you are looking into buying a franchise, I would advise you to make sure your area is as compact as possible, so you don’t have to drive a long way to your customers,” Mark says. “It is important to understand there will be ups and downs, like with any business, but if you do your best and put in the hours you will have a good level of sales.
“My plan for the future is to keep on doing what I’m doing. The Mac Tools franchise has given me more flexibility, as I get my full weekend now and I also enjoy the fact that if I want to finish at 3pm I can. There is a lot of work involved, but to start and finish when I want is a definite advantage when having a little girl.”
Existing Mac Tools franchisees are typically earning gross profits ranging from £50,000-£75,000 from one territory and there are various territories available across the country. Territories typically include around 180 automotive locations, making them bigger than those of similar franchise opportunities.