Why did Sportmadness choose franchising as its global growth model?
When we started Sportmadness, we had no idea how to run a business.
We had no idea.
But we were sure of a few things:
- The amateur sports industry needed to become more professional.
- We wanted to build a global company.
Little by little, time passed and what started as an apprenticeship took shape into what it is today and, more importantly, what is to come. Along the way, we have learned thousands of lessons, but if we stop to reflect, we come to the conclusion that the things that were clear to us in 2012 are still clear today.
Let's go back in time. We were working in the amateur sports industry trying to apply lessons learned from other companies and industries to provide a great user experience, and we found that we were achieving our goals. People were happy. Customers were happy. And from all the information we could gather, we found that the same thing was happening almost everywhere else in the world - the need of customers and users for better-managed sports services.
Is it possible to franchise a sports management company?
We started to think about how we could expand beyond the northwestern area of Madrid and make the leap to other parts of Spain and, why not, the world. We analyzed dozens of models and came up with the franchise. The first question we asked ourselves was: is it possible to franchise a sports management company? Google didn't give us the answer we were looking for, so we got to work. Trial and error, trial and error, trial and error until we found an idea to develop the first sports management franchise.
From the very first moment, we fell in love with this model. We saw that it was a feasible way to grow, that it would allow us to meet entrepreneurs like us in other parts of the world, and that it also made financial sense, as franchises generate economies of scale that allow franchisees to be more competitive locally and to constantly grow their business, which translates into the ability to generate more revenue with lower costs and therefore greater profitability.
The truth is that everything, in hindsight, seems easier, but in the beginning, of course, we had a lot of doubts and concerns. But fortunately, we moved forward.
No one had created a model like this
It was at the end of 2016 that we started preparing our model to be franchisable. We didn't have a mirror to look in. No one had created a model like this. Traditionally, franchising has been about industries such as hotels, stores, or gyms, but there are fewer, at least little-known, examples of service franchises. Added to this is the complexity of creating a model with dozens of different services in two very deep business sectors (events and sports activities) and requiring a high degree of local adaptation. Who said fear?
We tried to take inspiration from the best, learn from them, and set up a model that would allow our franchisees to have a successful business model with the least amount of risk.
And since then, we haven't stopped thinking for a single day about how we can continue to improve our franchise model, how we can help our entrepreneurs more, and how we can provide the best sports services to customers and end users. It's a never-ending race that we're thrilled to be able to run with dozens of entrepreneurs.
The franchise model has given us the opportunity to reach over 10 countries in less than 5 years and we are confident that we will soon be in many more, learning globally and executing locally with the fantastic community of entrepreneurs that is Sportmadness.
The journey has just begun.