Franchising in India has really picked up and we see a lot of people now opting to pick up franchisees from brands who have shown the way forward.
Back in the year 1980 when franchising was just making its entry in India we had a lot of pessimistic people decrying the Success ratio of Franchisee in general and franchising as a way of doing business in India. We were not ready to shun the home grown method of starting from scratch and building the business block on block. The method was elimination of bad ideas and implementing and driving the success mantra.
We often would hear from our Grandfathers that to build a successful business you need to give it time; you need to observe what works and what does not. You need to understand customer requirements, pricing and marketing. Ideal time frame stated was 999 (Nine Hundred and Ninety Nine Days) which would work out to approximately 3 years of Business. If you were successful to break operational costs and recover 75% of your investment in this time frame you were considered to be a success.
Franchising hit India in the 1990’s with a lot of vigour people started opting for the Franchise model based on the experience of the countries that they had visited. The biggest draw was that it was a tried and tested model.
Most of the early Business Opportunities in Education Sector in India were based on Skill development and placement of Students as this was the requirement in India. As of date the Education Sector in India has witnessed a more mature approach and we now have franchisees which not only offer Skill Development, but also Skill enhancement courses these courses cater to students from the Age of 4 year olds for life Skill enhancement to Graduates & Undergraduates willing to foray into a matrix of fields from Science / Technology to the Management Coaching Institutes. Of late the Indian Education sector has seen a flux of Franchise outlets which prepare students for competitive exams which enables them to build their careers in specialized field like Medicine / Engineering / Chartered Accountancy and even pilots and Navy Cadet Crew Members.
The Year 1990 to 2002 also lead to the advent of Franchising in the Education Sector with Educational Business Opportunities in India started growing at a tremendous pace. The trend was set with home grown Computer Training Companies like APTECH (Previously APPLE Computer Education) started with the Franchise Concept, looking at their Success many home grown brands like DataPro, Tulec, NIIT and others joined into the booming Franchising Market. The Markets Matured out from the Skill orientation and placement platform to getting the students to be ready to compete for the limited and coveted seats in established fields like Medicine / Engineering and Abroad Studies. The humble tuitions which was once frowned upon is a complex chain of Franchisees spread across the length and breadth of the country giving students in Tier II & Tier III Cities an opportunity to compete with the best in the country. The Business Opportunities in Educational Sector in India has really started to look up.
Educational franchise opportunities in India was no more limited to people who knew the subject, franchising allowed people with Money to invest and a zeal to start an Education business to foray into this field. The franchising system eliminated the need of the Investor to know the subject and based the delivery on a platform of systems and support from a core group of people specialised in different aspects of Training / Education Delivery / Logistics and Marketing.
The 10 Reasons why Educational Franchisees were Successful is as under:
1. Standard Curriculum: The Syllabus was designed keeping in view the latest trends available in the market. This meant that the content was relevant and useful. It was revised at periodic times to keep it in tune with the Needs of the Industry.
2. Delivery: The Delivery of the Content was based on Systems. Be it Management Training / Coaching For Competitive Classes / Computer Education or any other Education Franchise the Common Parameters were:
a. Training Methodology: Trainer Hand books and exercises which were already predefined with objectives and final outcomes already laid out. It did not matter if you studied at Mumbai / Los Angles or in a small town like Kholapur in India. You learn the same content and had the same type of training. A Small difference would be noticeable based on the trainer, but this was negligible.
b. Course Material: Centralized Books delivery based on learned content available in all the Major languages and Local Languages. You could get a book in Nepali / Chinese and also the same content in English. Also all the required content for learning was provided to the student in the form of a Student kit.
c. Knowledge Sharing: Franchising offered the students in different parts of the world to share their ideas with one another, opening up a potentially vast resource for students across the globe.
3. Global Outlook: Since Organizations were now not restricted by location they had the opportunity to have centers across the globe this also provided students with a Global Outlook and they could relate to the students across the globe through ideation and debates which were held by these companies in the form of Quiz and contests.
4. Workplace Readiness: All business models came up with the concept of ready professionals so while they prepared you for the different activities they also realised the importance of creating students who were work place ready. So while studying for an MBA entrance test you were also taught how to face a Group Discussions and the Personal Interview along with Dressing Sense and Work Culture. Studying at a Computer center would involve the process of cracking an Interview and the Demo Reel or the Program Code which will help you sail through. Teachers training and Soft Skills would equip you with cultural knowledge and global outlook.
5. Optimum Finance: Since the investment on Material and Manpower was being centralised the cost of Business also went down hence the overall Student fee Structures also became affordable. It was within easy Access of a Middle Income Family upwards. In recent time CSR activity of companies has made these courses available to the lower strata of economically Weak sections also.
6. Multiple Options: The options and the choices available are numerous in nature. You can find a Center for learning almost everything from Table Manners / Aviation Training / Soft Skills / English to learning how to operate a Sewing Machine all under the Education Franchise Head.
7. Opportunity: This is one of the Major reasons why Franchising in India – Education Sector has really picked up. It gives the Marginalised students a ray of hope of catching up with students who have more exposure to the changing times. Franchisees with their vast networks are able to bring these opportunities to their door steps something which was unthinkable some 15 years back.
8. Marketing: All the Companies have mastered the art of getting the students into their center’s with a well oiled and tested set of counselling material and marketing ideas which they know will strike the cord of the requirements of the local community. This makes the trial and error segment almost Zero and they are able to start rolling from day one.
9. Gestation Period: The gestation period of 999 days is a thing of the past you are on the roll from the day you inaugurate the center and are rolling. There is no need to wait for the first customer; you will have your first lot of students in the first 15 days.
10. Trained Manpower: Major Franchising companies have In house training for the staff f their centers and there is no worry of employees gaining the upper hand. The franchisor is always at hand to help you out with trainings / recommend staff and also pitch in with visiting faculty for a charge if things go out of control. The show never Stops and hence you do not have the Operational worry on classes being cancelled / employee’s tantrum.
Educational franchise opportunities in India on the upswing, we may see more changes in the time to come and the field will mature out with more knowledge sharing among the companies, but definitely this is the time to start an educational franchise. There are a host of Educational Franchise Opportunities in India you can pick and choose which one you would like to go in for depending on the Age group and the type of education that you would like to start.
The Writer is the Business Head- Franchising of BRAINY – A division of Brain Child learning and has been in the field of Educational Franchise since the last 25 Years. Brainy is a franchisor which deals with the whole brain training of children and providing life skills to children in the Age Group of 7 to 16 years of Children across the globe. For more details on the brand you can visit www.brainy.co.in