Plan-it Cards is one of the leading companies in the greeting card distribution sector. Our success has been built on both the quality and range of our product, and the strength of our Franchisee distribution network.
Founded by Jonathan and Irene Waterson in 2000, they have built Plan-it Cards up as an independent family-owned business with the customer firmly at the forefront of their business model. We now supply thousands of retail outlets up and down the country including petrol stations, post offices, convenience stores (independent and symbol), chemists, hospital shops, garden centres, newsagents and more.
We continue to invest in new products and designs, making continuous improvements to our systems to maintain the highest quality in everything we do.
Plan-it Cards is looking for enthusiastic individuals / couples from across the UK to join our growing and successful franchise network.
Do people still send cards?
YES! The British are a nation of card senders, we send more cards per person than any other nation. Latest industry figures for 2022 from the Greeting Card Association (GCA) confirm it remains a £1.5 billion industry with 90% of all cards still being sold through brick-and-mortar outlets; it is estimated that there are over 100,000 independent retailers in the UK.
This provides confidence that the UK population continues to be highly engaged with greetings cards. Sending and receiving handwritten cards generates positive feelings and wellbeing, creating an emotional response. The fact that someone has spent the time to make or choose a card, write it, and send it makes the person receiving it feel far more special and cared for than receiving instant texts, emails, or other social media messages.
Our franchise opportunity
Plan-it Cards franchisees supply their own exclusive greetings cards, gift wrap and gift bags and display equipment to retailers in their exclusive territory.
Once a month, the Franchisee visits the site to refresh and replace stock sold, introduce new designs and products, and collect the revenue for stock sold from the store. This guarantees the Franchisee a regular monthly income.
Our top performing franchisees are currently earning over £5,000 a month.
With access to our brand, our product, our systems, and our know-how, the Franchisees role is to build proactive business relationships and sales with the retailers in their own exclusive territory.
The more outlets opened and the greater the volume of Plan-it Cards you can put into each outlet the better the turnover and profit margins.
Building up your account base is made easier because with Plan-it Cards the retailer only pays for what they sell so for the retailer there is no stock write off, no initial outlay and an immediate profit with no financial risk.
Following our system the focus for the Franchisee is to target independent stores and national symbol group chains; Post Office, Co-Op, Londis, Premier, Spar, Costcutter, Budgens, Nisa, Shell, BP and Esso.
We supply directly to a number of these chains up and down the country; many of which are currently in areas where we don't have franchisees– this represents a massive opportunity for new franchisees to be earning income from Day 1 in many territories.
Franchisees have access to over 400 designs, available across 2 sizes of cards and 2 Everyday price points and bar codes, so displays can be bespoke to the retail environment.
The range includes everyday birthday cards as well as extensive ranges of occasions, relations and age-related cards, plus packeted gift wrap and gift bags to complete the range.
New designs are released monthly to maintain customer interest and increase sales. In addition, extra sales revenue is achieved through seasonal ranges such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Easter, and Father’s Day etc.
Typically, you will work from home so require access to a vehicle and mobile devices. Initially storage of product will typically be in a garage or suitable spare room. Over time, as your business expands, you may wish to look for your own offices/ off site storage facilities. It is also possible for you to become a multi van operation and employ merchandisers if the business supports this.
Key reasons to invest in a Plan-it Cards Franchise
- A proven business model with over 20 years experience
- Massive potential - £1.5 billion annual greeting card market with over 90% of greetings cards still sold in physical shops
- Work with a wide range of well-know customers such as Post Office, Co-Op, Londis, Premier, Spar, Costcutters, Budgens, Nisa, Shell, BP and Esso.
- Over 100,000 independent retailers in the UK
- A recession proof industry - every day is a birthday or a special occasion!
- Monthly visits to retailers means regular monthly income for franchisees
- Exclusive products and wide range of cards for all occasions - over 400 designs
- Home-based; low overheads & high margins
- No experience required; Initial training and on-going support
- Flexible hours
- No hard sell - retailer only pays for what they sell
- Business can be expanded into a multi-van operation
The investment - set up costs
The total set up costs will be between £22,000 to £27,000 – this will vary by franchisee location & operations. This includes our Re-launch offer with the saving of £5,000 on our Franchise Fee.
We can support you through the process to apply for any additional funding if required.
The figures includes the provision of working capital and other set up costs. Specifically,
- A full and comprehensive training programme is delivered, so no previous greetings card, sales, or business experience is required.
- Our initial training covers all the elements of running and growing a greetings card franchise.
- Course includes field training with an existing Franchisee.
- You will have on loan for the lifetime of your Franchise licence, a full copy of the Operations Manual.
- Professional Business Plan - Including financial sustainability acceptable to high street banks and other lenders.
- Business Launch - Hands-on guidance & support to secure retail outlets.
- Stock and Display Equipment
- Sundries - Including uniforms, business stationery, shelving and packing equipment.
- On-going Marketing Support - From launching your business on-going support is provided to help you with the continued sales growth of your business and is tailored to your requirements.
Ideal franchise partner
Our Franchisees come from all sorts of backgrounds and walks of life, farmers, policemen, magistrates, members of the RAF, teachers, firemen, petrol forecourt retailers.
You need to:
- Be enthusiastic and self-motivated with a desire to build a successful business
- Forthright and honest
- Not over promise and under deliver
- Have excellent spoken and written communication skills
- And be prepared to work hard and have a desire to work in the greetings cards industry
Interested in Plan-it Cards?
Contact Jonathan Waterson
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