An East Midlands businessman who founded a local locksmith firm in 2018 has met with such extraordinary success that he plans to add another 30 franchisees to his expanding business empire before the end of the year.
Kevin Russell (40), a serial entrepreneur, established LockFit in the summer of 2018 – and less than three years later, he has expanded his firm’s network to encompass 45 franchisees throughout England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
While it’s natural to imagine that Covid might have impeded LockFit’s expansion, Kevin believes his firm’s new position as probably the fastest growing locksmith franchise in the UK has actually been assisted by the pandemic.
He said: “During lockdown, a lot of people sat at home, addressing the uncertainty by thinking about their careers and looking for opportunities, so Covid saw us expand our franchising network at a more prolific rate than we were expecting.
“As we expanded, demand for our work also proved very resilient. We cater for the emergency services, for estate agents and for private homeowners, who often invest in upgrading security when times are tough - so if ever there was a sector that could be described as recession-proof, the locksmith industry is it.”
LockFit’s Franchise Director, Andy Moore , who has 30 years’ experience in the franchise industry, believes the LockFit is a proven Franchise model that works, and a great choice for people wishing to start their own business but with our Franchise it lessens substantially the risk . .
He said: “Our franchisees enjoy very reasonable £5,995 + vat franchise fee including training, tools and starter kit, which are a lot less than some of our competitors. They also get fixed (rather than percentage) monthly royalty fees, which means their success is exactly that their success!.”
And yet Kevin is adamant that his firm’s aggregated multi-million-pound turnover has been achieved not with a rapacious appetite for expansion but by providing a simpler, more confidence-inspiring, transparent service for customers, as well as for franchisees.
He said: “The locksmith industry in the UK is unregulated, so what we’re trying to do at LockFit is change the culture for the better by being transparent and by removing any doubt or pressure from the mind of the customer.
“For instance, while a lot of firms add call-out charges, labour costs, and parts to their base quotes, our business is set up to be clear, transparent pricing and confidence-inspiring.
“We give a simple fixed price, we keep people informed about the nature of the work we’re carrying out and we back up our service with a 12-month warranty.”
As for the future, Kevin is content that the outlook for his business is better than ever.
He added: “We’ve reached a stage where major nationwide players are now approaching us to help service shortfalls in their own networks - so in addition to increasing our own UK infrastructure from 45 to 75 franchisees in 2021, we’re also now looking into international franchising models in both Australia and Canada.
“It’s hard to believe how far we’ve come, but to say that the future looks bright for our little Burton-based locksmith firm is a very welcome understatement!”
For more information, visit www.lockfit.co.uk.