Turning a dream into an investment

Tony Schafer, from Bedshed Aspley, vowed he would own a business before he turned forty. He bought a Bedshed franchise two weeks before his fortieth birthday, and hasn’t looked back.

While the first few years were not easy, Tony’s story demonstrates how dedication and commitment can really pay off. Tony worked long and hard to get the business in the position it’s in now.

Fast forward ten years, and business is booming.  When asked what franchisees can expect in return for their investment, Tony shared how it all happened for him.

The first year

Right from the beginning I was determined to make my store a success. During the first six months of opening, I slept in the warehouse and rented out my house, to cut costs. I worked hard, and I learned a huge amount. While it was no doubt a rollercoaster ride, the results were worth it in the end.

Before I moved into the Aspley store with Bedshed, there was bedding shop in its place. In my first year, we turned over more than double what that shop had turned over the in the previous year. It was a rewarding feeling, knowing that our determination had paid off and we were able to see successful results.

That first year, I was even able to purchase my own Porsche – something I never thought I’d be able to do.

How to grow

While the first year was definitely the most challenging, it was important to keep the momentum going and look for new ways to improve the store. I worked hard to get the best staff possible, and really took the time to ensure they had the necessary skills. For me, it’s vital that my staff are above all else, great salespeople.

I believe it’s worth giving your staff an incentive to work hard. I therefore reward my staff on a commission based agreement, which has been fundamental in driving sales. That being said, I’ve always found a business performs best when the owner is on site.  

Where I’m at now

 I’d say I’m roughly five times better off for owning my own franchise, as opposed to working for someone else. Needless to say, I now own property and don’t need to sleep in the warehouse. While the profit is dependent on a number of variables year to year, I generally see profit of around  10% on the total revenue, which is very rewarding.

The future looks bright; however I know we’re in a competitive industry. I know I have to continue to work hard to keep up with the industry and stay ahead of the game. At the same time, I am effectively my own boss and I do take advantage of the lifestyle benefits that come with franchising.  

Bedshed’s franchise calculator is a great place for potential franchisees to get an estimate of their profit projection with opening a franchise.

About Bedshed: Bedshed is one of Australia’s largest specialist bedding and bedroom furniture franchises with a network of more than 30 stores across the country. Bedshed has grown steadily since it started in Western Australia in 1980 and is currently expanding on the eastern seaboard.