Sam Bradshaw tells us what attracted him to Razzamataz Theatre Schools and about the running of his business in Hampstead
Initially it was Denise’s appearance on Dragons’ Den back in 2007. I loved the idea and I applied for information at the time but back then I was looking for something more full-time so it wasn’t right. But I kept the details and revisited it last year when I realised it was the perfect business to fit into my life.
Yes I went to drama school and have been a performer for the past 15 years.
Yes, I still do but Razzamataz fits in perfectly with this and it’s great that I can run both businesses side by side.
I looked into setting up on my own but it was the support of working with a team and getting guidance from a tried and tested formula that was the most appealing. I was very worried about the insurance side of the business and making sure I was properly covered and this is something where being part of a franchise can really help.
Savings and a loan.
There are many exciting opportunities available to me because this is a growing business. Working with the Razzamataz network has been fantastic and I really feel my ideas are listened two, which makes me feel like a very respected member of the team. Although I have been open for less than a year, I have had some amazing feedback from parents who are delighted with the progress their children are making, especially the shyer children who now have the confidence to perform during the school assembly.
You have to build up really good relationships with all your parents and really listen to them and take into account what they are saying, which can be challenging when there are so many of them. But when you do you hear some amazing things about the students so it is definitely worth investing that time.
Don’t underestimate the amount of work you will need to put in. Even though it is a franchise business you will still have to do the work yourself, so be realistic about your targets and budgets. Also, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box whilst following the Razzamataz systems and guidelines the whole time.
Having a head office to phone is really valuable, especially in a case of an emergency. They also give you gentle reminders of things like renewing your insurance so you don’t feel so alone. We also get to benefit from many events like the AGM, which was really inspiring. We are all creative people in the franchise and the AGM was really informative but done in a relaxed way so we all felt we could ask lots of questions.
My school is on a Friday so I tend to deal with the register on Thursday and banking on Monday. I tend to focus on marketing two days a week and of course in between there are always lots of emails and phone calls to respond to.
Many people have have found a rewarding long term career through franchising with Razzamataz Theatre Schools.
Razzamataz Theatre Schools franchise, with almost 50 schools throughout the UK, has many retired performers as Principals.
Nick Furlong and Gemma Hextall bought Razzamataz Sutton Coldfield in June 2015.
Jessica Chandler Smith has seen her Razzamataz franchise in Brentwood achieve huge success in just a few short weeks.
Lauren Kirkbride joined Razzamataz Theatre Schools as a student and now runs her own franchise.
The new Principals at Razzamataz are all set for their September openings after completing a week long extensive training session.
Michael French launched Razzamataz Barnet in April 2012 and has recently renewed his franchise agreement for a further five years.
Debbi Ledwith, Principal of Razzamataz Newbury, launched her school to allow her to spend more time with her three children.
Proving that age is really just a number, Pam Dixon, has run her Razzamataz Theatre Schools franchise since 2008.
Charlotte Young, the Principal of Razzamataz West Cumbria first became a franchisee in October 2006.
The Razzamataz Theatre Schools network continues to grow with the launch of two new London schools as well as a school in the North East.
At Razzamataz's recent training week, three new franchisees who have bought franchise re-sales, joined the franchisees who are launching in new territories.
Razzamataz have a number of franchisees who are either former teachers or combining part-time teaching with being a Razzamataz franchisee.
The support from Head Office is fantastic and they are always there to listen and to guide you through. You are getting advertising/marketing ideas, contacts and systems provided for you that you may not have if you were to open an independent school.Amy Latchman, Razzamataz Rickmansworth.
Buying into a franchise is an excellent way to begin running your own business. You have all the benefits of working for yourself but the added support and proven success of a well established and recognised brand. For a person new to business, it is ideal.Helen Green, Razzamataz Sheffield
I don’t have a business background so after deciding to retire from professionally performing it was the memories of Razzamataz on Dragons’ Den that set the wheels in motion. I was really inspired by the brand and the business model and because it is a franchise business we receive a lot of help and support from Head Office as well as on-going training so I can make Razzamataz Barnet the success that I believe it can be. In the last 12 months, I have doubled my student numbers in a very competitive market and I have now clear plans on how I would like my business to progress this year.Michael French, Razzamataz Barnet
One of Dragons Den most successful investments!
TWO franchises for the price of ONE!
Affordable part time performing arts lessons