International Women’s Day which falls on March 8th every year is a fantastic day for celebrating women’s achievements. Aside from this, as a company founded by a woman, we’re all about supporting other women, and not just on March 8th! To celebrate this years’ International Women’s Day, we’ve put together a short list of some of the top female leaders in franchising.
You guessed it, our very own CEO, Suzie McCafferty, is of course top of our list! Suzie’s experience in franchising is extensive, to say that least. From setting up her own refillable ink cartridge business at home in Scotland around 20 years ago, which eventually led to 70 franchised outlets across 6 countries, to founding Platinum Wave and helping other franchises succeed across the globe. Suzie’s contribution to the franchising industry is impressive. Not only is she British Franchise Association (bfa) accredited, Suzie is the longstanding Chairperson the bfa Scottish Regional Forum. Since founding Platinum Wave in 2010, Suzie has made the business a member of Encouraging Women into Franchising (EWIF), built a strong relationship with media partners, The Global Franchise Magazine Group, and has won numerous awards for her entrepreneurship and consultancy.
Pip Wilkins, the British Franchise Association
Also highly regarded in the world of franchising, Pip Wilkins is the British Franchise Associations’ chief executive. Like Suzie, Pip also has 20 years of experience in franchising, starting her journey at 19 years old as an administrator for the bfa. Pip worked her way up the ladder, working in different areas such as events, business services and operations before becoming the bfa’s first female CEO in 2016. As a passionate advocate for British Franchising, Pip regularly speaks at events and seminars around the world, as well as contributing regularly to the business and franchise media.
Denise Hutton-Gosney, Razzamataz
What started off as a performer’s simple dream to make performing arts available to all young people, turned in to an award-winning theatre school. Denise Hutton-Gosney founded Razzamataz Theatre School in 2000, but the business really propelled into the spotlight in 2007, when Denise bravely entered BBC’s Dragons’ Den. For the first time ever, a Dragon offered all the money without haggling over the equity. Denise gratefully accepted Duncan Bannatyne’s offer of £50,000 for a 25% stake in Razzamataz, helping her to launch the company all over the UK and abroad. Denise’s passion and drive has seen a number of strategic partnerships including opportunities with Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox.
Cheryl Macdonald, Yoga Bellies
From being made redundant from her job after going on maternity leave, to being the founder of a business with over 100 franchises, Cheryl MacDonald from YogaBellies is another prime example of a female franchising leader. Cheryl turned her love of yoga into YogaBellies (yoga classes to support women through pregnancy and after birth) in 2014. Since then, she has appeared on ITV’s This Morning, as well as Dragon’s Den. Unlike Denise Hutton-Gosney, Cheryl turned down Duncan Bannatyne’s £50,000 offer. As YogaBellies is a community of women, Cheryl wasn’t too sure having a man as the mentor was the right choice, she explained. Yet, Cheryl still managed to single-handedly build the brand.
Sarah Cressall, The Creation Station
Whilst working on Operations Raleigh in Zimbabwe helping local women run their own creative businesses, Sarah Cressall realised just how passionate she was about this. Upon her return home in 2002, Sarah established what would be a multi award-winning arts and crafts franchise with over 100 franchise owners. Sarah now plans to take their franchise model overseas to become an international business. Not only is Sarah a multi award-winning entrepreneur, she’s also an author who’s book, Creative Sparks, shot to number one in its Amazon category, and an experience keynote speaker at a variety of conferences, creative events and franchise events such as Franchise Fest.
Lucy Campbell, Right at Home
Lucy has a wealth of experience in franchising and has a strong track record of supporting a wide portfolio of business to thrive; taking them from pre-start through to scale. Some of Lucy’s most notable successes came from her time in the ‘For More Than Profit’ arena where she was instrumental in supporting businesses to not only secure significant investment and drive profit, but also to make a genuine difference. With this in mind, it is no wonder that Lucy can often be heard stating that Right at Home is most definitely her “perfect match”- and that her years with Right at Home have been the highlight of her career to date.
Platinum Wave have had the pleasure of working for and alongside some of these fantastic female franchise leaders. If you’d like to find out how we can help your franchise, or if you’re looking for a new franchise opportunity, do not hesitate to get in touch with Platinum Wave today.