Case Study – David Dwyer, Dublin Ireland

April 13, 2012

Following his graduation, David Dwyer worked for 8 years as a civil servant. He then moved on to become a self-employed retailer of a chain of convenience stores which lasted for 20 years. Then 6 years ago, he sold this partnership and spent 9 months as a retail manager for a large building and gardening supplies showroom.

David had known about the concept of franchise systems for some time, after attending business shows in Ireland for the best part of 20 years. When he first heard about Foot Solutions, he was at the Dublin Franchise Show in November 2007.

“I had an existing interest in first aid and medical businesses having been involved in the Irish version of the St John’s Ambulance Brigade; and I was also very keen to do something that involved helping others. When I first came across the Foot Solutions venture, I realised that they were operating in quite a niche market. There was no imminent competition and the product was really good.”

Foot Solutions are the world’s largest health and wellness franchise focusing on foot care and proper fit. They have a proven business model operating in over 200 locations worldwide. The customer service they deliver, combined with the latest technology makes it difficult for companies to compete with them in an online shopping environment, making their niche franchise opportunity a great investment and an exciting proposition for anyone looking to start their own retail empire.

“A number of unique selling points included the good margin that was on offer and the good opportunities for growth. As I am generally interested in the health and wellness sector, I understand that there is an expanding market due to the aging population, which potentially makes it more resilient in a downturn.”

There are now approximately 14 million people in the UK aged over 60, and this is projected to increase by 50% over the next 25 years. Over half of new cases of foot care come from people over 65 and 58% of these customers are choosing to receive their foot care through a private provider rather than the NHS. This is just one of the six areas where the Foot Solutions market growth is set to boom.

“Using a mixture of personal finance, bank lending and some leasing, it was only 2 and a half months before I bought my franchise in September 2008. The training commenced shortly after, with 2 or 3 weeks in the USA and 1 week of training in another store prior to my own launch in the South of Dublin City. I was also lucky enough to have an additional team member supporting me during my opening, although this is not normally the case.

“The training is very good and I was continually supported and mentored to ensure things were on track. Foot Solutions even put together a 120-day plan which kicked in after signing the lease and involved everything needed to bring me up to speed, ready for when the doors opened. The 120-day plan included incredible detail, right down to how many staplers and scissors to order for the stationary supplies!

“Going forward, there is always help at the other end of the telephone, and updated resources are easily available to us with direct access to medical staff in the USA for any queries.”

Foot Solutions use the most advanced technology combined with a full understanding of biomechanics of feet and gait, along with the highest quality footwear to fit each customer’s unique feet. Using their customised solutions delivered through their retail stores, Foot Solutions improve comfort and body alignment and help customers achieve better health through their feet. They enjoy repeat customer because they provide bespoke solutions with an attractive range of footwear.

Foot Solutions have six market niches which include: Health & Wellness, Active/Sports, Comfort & Style, Medical/Therapeutic, Arch Supports & Orthotics. Many people use their in-store services to buy all their footwear from trainers to fashionable office attire. This includes people with long-term foot conditions and injury, or those that simply want the best for their feet. Foot Solutions offer personal service delivered by trained experts and are popular across all age groups for people who are looking for comfort without compromising on style.

“For anyone who is looking into buying their first franchise, I would recommend – before even getting involved – that you decide what you want to get out of it. Plan how much time and effort you are prepared to put into it, and if franchising is therefore a viable option to achieve this.

“I would definitely consider buying another Foot Solutions franchise as I’m really enjoying it. And as for my plans for the future? Well, watch this space!”

 

For more details regarding the Foot Solutions franchise opportunity, please contact John on 00 353 (0)81 8333668 or email john@footsolutions.ie

 

To download a PDF copy of this case study, please click below.

Case Study Foot Solutions – David Dwyer