With a 35 year view of the UK’s domestic cleaning industry, Molly Maid has seen many changes in the £2.7 billion sector but President & CEO Kevin Hipkins believes a combination of the coronavirus and Brexit will see the company’s Franchise Owners double in size in the next five years. In an interview with What Franchise he shares some of his thoughts on why and what this will mean for Molly Maid.
What has happened in the industry post-pandemic and Brexit?
“The pandemic has meant that more families are concerned about the cleanliness and safety of their home, so we had already seen demand for our services increase starting from last June, but adding the impact of thousands of cleaners returning to their native countries in Europe because of Brexit has simply exploded demand for our services. In my 30 years having seen Molly Maid expand in Canada, the US and here in the UK, I have never seen anything like the current environment.”
Have customers been asking for a different type of cleaning?
“Customers are much more aware of what they want done in their home and who is coming into it to clean. One of the products that we have long used is a specialist environmentally friendly sanitiser that was proven to kill the coronavirus so customers were obviously asking more about this and how it was being used in their home but it’s so much more than just the products we use. Customers want to know that the people they trust into their home are safe and healthy and because of our HomeSafe procedures and the fact all of our cleaners are employees, it’s something that we can make sure of. I think this is going to stay around for a long time too.”
What do you see in the future for Molly Maid Franchise Owners?
“Prior to the pandemic we had several Franchise Owners turning over greater than £500,000 per year in sales but a few of these are now on pace to reach £1,000,000 because of the increase in demand that I mentioned. And some Franchise Owners have recently doubled the monthly sales they were generating in January of this year. It is incredibly exciting to see. We are already by far the most well-known brand in the industry and this growth is going see us become even more of a household name.”
How are you preparing for this growth?
“We’ve invested heavily in two key areas – Franchise support and our website. Earning the 5-Star Franchisee satisfaction distinction, especially last year, shows how highly Franchise Owners rate our support and we’re expanding this even more to help them grow. A new enquiry management system has been rolled out to help manage the huge increase in sales leads and a new company intranet using a leading platform is planned for September. And, our website which has already gone through several changes in the pandemic has just recently been updated again. You have to constantly improve to help Franchise Owners take advantage of the business environment.”