Dreamt of running her own business – Sophie’s story
Sophie Baldwin joined the We Love Pets team in 2016, opening a branch in Stroud, Gloucestershire.
Opportunity to combine her knowledge of animals with her dream of running her own business
We Love Pets provided Sophie with the opportunity to combine her knowledge of animals with her dream of running her own business, and with a lifelong love of horses Sophie was a superb match for our team of franchisees.
“I spent two years as a nanny/groom for a family with horses and horses continue to be a big part of my life now, then I worked as a veterinary nurse, initially as a student veterinary nurse, and spent 10 years in that career. Financially, veterinary nursing wasn’t paying very well so I started working as a sales rep for pet insurance and pet nutrition companies. I went back to be a vet nurse in 2008.
“I am used to dealing with animals and clients; I couldn’t see myself continuing as a vet nurse for the rest of my career. Business ownership really appealed to me, so I started looking into how I could run a business in the animal industry. We Love Pets just seemed like a natural progression to allow me to combine both together.”
Accounting, marketing and recruitment is all taken care of
Although Sophie joins the brand with an impressive history with animals, she knew she’d need help and support with accounting, marketing and recruitment if she were to start her own business, franchising was motivating as it was all taken care of.
“I came across the We Love Pets franchise website and they had their brochure available to read. I wanted to find out more, so I applied online and We Love Pets contacted me to go in and pursue the opportunity further.”
We Love Pets have been extremely supportive
“The whole business side of things, such as the facts, accounting and marketing scared me! It appealed to me that, with franchising, it was all part of the package and taken in hand for you. We Love Pets have been extremely supportive and the accountancy firm they have linked me up with has also been very good. Having never employed anybody before I know I’ll also have training, when the time comes, in recruiting people. Family members and friends asked me why I wasn’t just setting up on my own. I wanted the support of the franchisor. You have support every step of the way.”
Sophie did her homework before approaching We Love Pets, but it didn’t take her long before she made her decision.
We Love Pets have won awards and the statistics around franchising and start-up businesses were very appealing.
“I gave myself a couple of weeks to make sure I had the finances and was able to commit to the business. They’ve won awards and the statistics around franchising and start-up businesses were very appealing. We Love Pets have been going since 2007, so they haven’t just started up and they’re growing.”
Sophie has found the start-up successful and offers these words of first hand advice to anyone considering their own We Love Pets franchise.
“So far it’s been a positive experience and I have been recommending it to others. It’s a friendly company, they’re quick to answer questions and they’ve kept me up to date with my training.
“Make sure you are ready financially to start with because you’re not going to make money straight away. Give yourself a good year of finances.”