Signarama UK has been acquired by Anas Saltaji, the master licensee for Signarama Canada, where he has grown the network to 49 locations since 2012.
The signs and graphics company says that whilst its existing UK franchisees have been trading successfully, the company has had a slow few years in recruiting franchisees but this is about to change as Saltaji is planning to replicate his overseas success here in the UK.
Saltaji, who also owns the master licence for a co-working franchise, Venture-X, explains his intensions for Signarama in the UK: “Initially, my plan is to focus on the current network. I want to reinvigorate them, help them to grow and remind them why they became franchisees. I want to get them excited about their businesses again.
“Excitement is contagious. It’s not difficult to generate leads but if you can then take people to a store and they see excitement, positivity and all that wonderful stuff, that’s when they start wanting to be part of it.”
The Canadian entrepreneur is aiming to build the UK network to 100 units and says that this acquisition is a long-term commitment, which involves, amongst other things, a planned relocation of his young family.
Saltaji said: “In the long-run, I plan to split my time between both countries. My wife and children will come too, and we’ll build a life here, as we have in Canada. It’s important to demonstrate my commitment to the UK franchise and all those who choose to join us. I want franchisees to know me, to trust me and feel that I’m passionate about their success. I can’t do that remotely.”
The company says its existing 10 Signarama franchisees that operate stores across the UK are cautiously optimistic about their new leader and are grateful for his candid approach to business and his ‘back to basics’ strategy for growth.
Mark Squires, the Harrogate franchisee, said: “We had a national meeting recently, and I think we all came away feeling positive afterwards. Anas shared his intentions and his goals for the UK.
“He made it clear that he wants to build up our confidence and satisfaction, before launching into any recruitment activity. He wants to replicate his success in Canada, here in the UK and, having shared his first five-year plan with us, I certainly feel more confident.”
Tracy Clark, the Milton Keynes franchisee, added: “I’ve been a franchisee since 2005 and since then, I’ve built a business of which I’m extremely proud. I welcome the entry of someone like Anas to the brand; there’s no denying the positive impact that his experience, both in franchising and the signage industry, will bring to the network. He knows the model, understands the business and has a proven history of growth and success.”
Saltaji comments: “The beauty of having Signarama in Canada is the resources that I can utilise here in the UK. I have an internal team dedicated to marketing, finance, product and business development. And their roles now encompass the UK franchise. I also have a strong network, some of whom turnover multi-million dollars a year and they are all incredibly excited to welcome the UK franchisees into the family.”
Signarama was established in the U.S. in 1986 and has more than 900 franchisees in 60 countries. The company offers customers custom-made outdoor and indoor signage including window graphics, banners, illuminated signs and vehicle graphics.