Zambrero is Australia’s largest Mexican restaurant chain. It has more than 245+ restaurants globally in Australia and worldwide, having taken its unique feel-good factor overseas to New Zealand, Ireland, the UK and US.
It is not just about serving the best burrito and bowl in town for Zambrero. What makes the brand unique is its Plate 4 Plate initiative which has already donated more than 65 million meals; for every burrito or bowl ordered at Zambrero, customers and franchisees can feel good inside and out knowing a meal is also donated to someone in need.
In a highly competitive fast food and QSR market, Australia’s leading brands need distinct personalities and points of difference.
Great food, authenticity, a strong mission and vision, brand awareness, systems and training, network support, culture and a profitable business model are all pillars of a successful food business.
But when you’re looking to invest in a franchise how do you evaluate all these elements?
Finding the right franchise
Taking into consideration your own personal values and goals, independent primary and secondary research are also essential to assessing all the facts and figures in order to choose the right franchise for you.
Jake Shaw, Zambrero Chief Operating Officer, points out “Potential franchisees need to be diligent in their discovery period and make use of all the information available. There is a lot to consider when you look for the right franchise, but you can start with these three pillars; discovery, diligence and dynamics.”
1. Discover: get all the facts
Gather as much information as you can on what owning a franchise is all about. Reading up on what you need to consider from a personal financial, operational and lifestyle perspective is an important first step.
Then you can start narrowing down brands that align with your values, goals and financial framework. Most franchisors should have an “about us” page, “franchise with us” page and “enquiry form” available on their website.
These should help you understand the company vision, mission and goals, culture, startup costs, location opportunities, business growth support and testimonials from franchisees already within the network. You can reach out directly to the franchisor with any specific questions and to learn more in general.
2. Diligence: seek expert advice
Every franchisor will provide several key documents and it is important to take the time to read these. Expert, third party advice can also help you evaluate the data information available.
“At Zambrero we recommend that our potential franchisees seek independent advice from an accountant and legal expert. We’re confident in our business model but it is a long term commitment and important that the franchisee is confident too,” Jake says.
3. Dynamics: meet the team
There’s another vital element to the process of choosing the right franchise. And that is getting to know the people behind the brand and discovering the culture.
Zambrero Unley franchisee Cathie Malloy’s advice is to “Make sure the culture is right for you. Zambrero is friendly and inclusive, we all work hard and want to grow our businesses, it’s a team effort.”
Reviewing franchise testimonials are a great starting point, but you can also organise conversations with existing franchisees for an even more powerful insight into what it is like to be part of the network.
Building trust and understanding is essential in a partnership, which is how the best franchisors view their relationship with franchisees. It’s more than just a commercial decision, it’s a two-way conversation and an investment in a long-term partnership.
“Prospective franchisees are looking for a brand they can trust and people they can work with long term, and the franchisor wants to get to know you too. Culture is a key part of our brand, as it is for many franchises, so it’s important that everyone involved is aligned” says Jake.
Find out more about Feel Good franchising
If you’re not ready to have a direct conversation, franchisors often host a group of prospective franchisees to meet and network with not only the key members of the franchisor team but other franchisees too; it is a terrific way to give a snapshot of the brand’s culture.
A franchise information night is a brilliant way to do this. Future franchisees meet the team in a conversational, relaxed setting and can get a big dose of the vibe and culture. The chief executive officer and chief operating officer usually attend these events, alongside department heads and current franchisees. Potential business owners use these events to network and ask questions about any facet of the business.
Zambrero will be offering this and more at its next Feel Good Franchise Information Evening on Tuesday 21 February in Sydney. Visit their franchise website to register or learn more about this event or upcoming events in your area.
As Zambrero continues its rapid growth throughout Australia and internationally, there are lots of great opportunities to become a franchisee and it is the perfect time to join our purpose driven “Zam Fam.” says Jake.