THE SUBWAY® PATH TO SUCCESS: FROM $40 IN HIS POCKET TO BOOMING RESTAURANT EMPIRE

He employs more than 250 people across 19 restaurants, but this path to success had relatively humble beginnings.

Some might call it a ‘rags to riches,’ story but Shamim Mohammad prefers to look at it differently.

“I came to Australia from Bangladesh on a scholarship to study a masters of accounting and finance at Deakin University. To keep myself busy, I was handing out resumes for two weeks looking for part time work until a friend of mine suggested I contact my local Subway,” said Mr Mohammad.

“Before I knew it, I had my first rostered shift and I knew instantly I belonged to something pretty special. I was so eager to impress the bosses, I even stayed back after my first shift just to make the restaurant as clean and presentable as possible.

“Fast forward just a few months in, and I was offered a supervisor position while the restaurant’s owners went on holidays. I truly took every opportunity I could to understand how to put the guest first in everything we do, so it took time – but I was then eventually promoted to a restaurant manager position, followed by the area manager within just a few years,” added Mr Mohammad.

That drive soon turned into more than just a promotion. It turned into a hunger to be his own boss and buy his first Subway® franchise.

“In 2011, my wife and I opened our first Subway restaurant in Melbourne. We had been saving for approximately four and a half years, and there’s no better – or intimidating – feeling of opening your own restaurant doors for the first time,” says Mr Mohammad.

Within just a few years, Shamim owned several Subway® franchises before expanding his empire. Now, nine years later, Shamim knows a thing or two about hard work. Today, he proudly owns 19 Subway® restaurants and employs more than 250 people across Victoria and New South Wales.

He has also been recognised with numerous accolades from Subway® headquarters including the Subway® Franchisee of the Year for East Victoria and Tasmania in 2015, and Subway Franchisee of the Year for Australia and New Zealand in 2016.  

Subway® Australia Country Director Chris Churchmichael, says Shamim’s zest and passion for success are part of the secret ingredients to franchise success.

“Shamim is an example of someone whose passion has been supported by the Subway system, and allowed him to build his own successful business,” Mr Churchmichael said.

“Subway has provided Shamim and his team the training and support they need to deliver on our deliciously unique Subway DNA - putting the guest first, making the prefect sandwich – but it is that human ingredient, that makes the difference.”

Shamim agrees and offers the following advice for budding franchise owners looking to make their start in the industry.

  • Be contactable: Shamim makes himself available for anyone of his 250+ team, and personally knows each team member by name.
  • Be present: Shamim still visits his stores at least once every 10 days, even to those located upwards of 300 kilometres away.
  • Be friendly: Shamim makes it his personal goal to start every conversation by asking how the person is, how they are feeling and what him and his senior team can do to help make his restaurants be the best they can be.
  • Be empowering: Shamim likes to empower his team – at all levels – to feel they own the restaurants as if it were their own, so they can feel a sense of accountability.

So, what is next for Shamim?

“Subway is a business model that keeps me challenged – you are part of a unique family that supports and empowers one another. It’s why I now have my eyes firmly set on acquiring 30 Subway restaurants in the future and helping my teams grow sustainable, fresh careers,” said Mr Mohammed.

For more about Shamim or to discover how you can start your career with Subway®, visit subway.com.au.

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