Originally opened in 1998, Malcolm has been centre owner since 2005 and now employs six staff from his 3448 sq ft unit based in Gateshead.
I worked in the sign industry straight from school at 16.
We’ve doubled our turnover from £240k to £500K and we’re still seeing steady growth which is very positive. We’ve also expanded our unit by buying the unit next door which has meant increasing our centre from 1724 sq ft to 3448 sq ft. The extra space has given us the opportunity to broaden our production capabilities and tender for much larger projects.
Having worked in the sign trade since leaving school I could have started a sign company from scratch but the risks involved out weighed the positives of buying a ready-made business. The idea of having loads of shiny new machines and no work was a concern so I looked at two other local sign companies that were for sale at the time, but the added bonus of taking on a franchise with additional support came out as the winner.
The biggest so far has been for Gateshead College’s new Baltic Campus and other campuses when they opened. The overall order in the end was in excess of £100k.
Hopefully we’ll be in a very comfortable financial position. The plan is, or should I say I am hopeful that my children will want to work for the business and eventually take over from me.
“We’ve doubled our turnover from £240k to £500K and we’re still seeing steady growth.” - Malcolm Lant, Franchisee, Signs Express (Gateshead)
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As one of the first franchises to open Nick has been centre owner since 1992 and now employs six staff