After being in the catering industry for over 40 years, Cass Clay had decided that he could no longer wanted to endure the unsociable hours, and a career change was in order to allow him to spend more time with his family.
“During my 40 years in the catering industry, I ran my own pub, was a general manger and a site director,” Cass says. “There came a point where I felt that I had completed this part of my life. The unsociable hours played a huge part in my decision to change careers and Countrywide Signs provided a great opportunity for me to start my own business, with the advantage of having time to spend with my family. Countrywide Signs was less expensive than some other franchises: it didn’t require renting any premises, or buying stock that could go off, which made a refreshing change!”
Cass already knew that becoming a franchise owner was what he wanted to do. He looked at a number of franchise opportunities across various industries, including catering. Based on the simplicity of the concept and low start-up costs, he found Countrywide Signs to be the most beneficial for him.
Cass moved to Stourbridge at the beginning of 2010 with his fiancée, Kim. He has three daughters, who have all grown up and flown the nest. He enjoys travelling and has visited many different countries whilst he was in the navy. He likes to attend music festivals and recently visited the Isle of Wight Festival and V Festival. He is pleased that he has more time for such leisure pursuits now, without the unsociable hours associated with his previous catering commitments.
Cass aims to get his first van to capacity as quickly as possible. His ultimate goal is to develop the business to having three vans on the road. He wants to be able to split his time between managing a team of employees and still spending time in the van on the more interesting and lucrative contracts.
His advice for others thinking of following his route into business? “If you are looking atinvesting in a franchise make sure you do your homework and choose something that will suit your lifestyle. Countrywide Signs suits me because the work allows me to be hands-on as well as giving me the opportunity to manage my own business. I get bored easily so I knew that investing in a franchise requiring long hours behind a desk or in a small unit wouldn’t suit me. That is why Countrywide Signs is perfect for me!”