June 11, 2008 // Franchising.com // :Pat Blake, Card Connection franchisee for Dublin has been named the winner of leading greeting card and publisher, Card Connection's highly prized Franchisee of the Year award, for achieving the highest level of sales of greeting cards across the company's team of almost 100 franchisees.
Pat who has recently expanded his franchise territory to included both North and South Dublin attended Card Connection's annual conference held in Warwickshire last week to receive his award.
"With Pat winning and Joe Sweeny for the West of Ireland, coming in a close second, the Emerald Isle really did come up 'top trumps' when the results were finalised," confirms Robina Every, managing director of Card Connection. "Both Pat and Joe have worked very hard over the past year and are an excellent example to the whole team, illustrating how such a high level of success can be achieved in their businesses.
"However, one way that Pat stands out is how he has focused on expanding his franchise through the acquisition of a neighbouring Card Connection territory," continues Every. "We are seeing a growing trend where our existing franchisees are snapping up neighbouring territories if they become available. In this way our most successful franchisees are now those who manage the business while employing staff to merchandise and distribute the greeting card ranges."
A number of other franchisees' achievements were recognised at the conference including David Roseweir from Scotland who won the 'Best Newcomer' award for what Every describes as: "his tremendous enthusiasm and his commitment to continue to develop his area over the coming 12 months." Best Improver went to Dave & Di Tudor from Hereford & Worcester who have recruited approximately 60 new retail outlets as customers since February last year, while North Wales franchisees, John & Trish Andrew were recognised with the Heidi Sulley commemorative cup - a special award for tenacity and team spirit.
"The continued success of Card Connection as one of the leading greeting card suppliers in the UK is a testament to all the hard work and dedication that all our franchisees put in on a daily basis," continues Every. "We are pleased to be able to recognise their achievements in this way as we certainly couldn't do it without them!"
Card Connection has limited vacancies for franchisees who are keen to run an expanding business. Successful candidates would ideally have some management experience as, once established, they would be expected to employ a small team, operate a warehouse and have several liveried vans on the road.
Because the franchise networks in the UK and Ireland are complete, the available opportunities now consist of acquiring an already-established territory from an existing franchisee. These vary in price according to their level of development, but start at £20,000 (+ stock) with earnings potential in excess of £50,000 per annum.