Gifting success for Presto
A gift that works 24x7 is unique concept brought in by Presto with their wide range of personlised gifts for various occasions. Anurag Poddar, Director, Presto shares his experience of being part of the 42nd FRO Bangalore, that was held on 4th and 5th September 2011 Neha Gohil (NG): Tell us about the origin and development of your company and how did the company opt for franchise route? Anurag Poddar (AP): Presto has been known for its world class personalised gifts and premiums in the retail market. We today stand at 78 Stores, most of which are franchise operated. Presto started as a retail format in 2005 with our first store in City Centre, Kolkata. We opened another four in a couple of years. However this growth was less than satisfactory for our long term game plan and we realised at this stage that quantum jump can only take place through franchising the business. Having read various magazines and journals on the subject and when you see real world examples like McDonald’s, KFC's etc, you know the way forward. NG: Promotional strategy is part and parcel of brand’s appropriate growth. Kindly elaborate on the approach your company adopts to enhance its reach. AP: Presto adopts various ATL as well as BTL activities to address promotional needs. We actively participate in corporate / college events as a gifts sponsor. We also advertise in radio as well as in print media. We have celebrity visits and in store events, coinciding with media coverage, creating an excellent PR activity. Yours truly is a weekly Guest speaker on 107.8 Power FM in Kolkata on the subject of gifting ideas. NG: Your company has participated in FRO Bangalore. What factors inspired you to participate in the event? AP: Franchise India has been spearheading the Franchise movement in India. We owe a lot to them in terms of our success as a franchisor. All the FROs organised at all major metros and other cities in India are great quality platforms for the franchisors and franchisees to meet and discuss the opportunity. The concurrent Franchise Conference has a great value attached, as it exposes the visitors on the merits of franchise business in general so that they start appreciating the relevance of terms like franchise fee and royalty. Presto is a regular participant at all FROs and will continue to be so in months and years to come. NG: Share your experience of being one of the participating companies at FRO. AP: Presto has been participating at numerous FROs for a few years now. We have received consistent, high quality leads at these shows with a high rate of conversion. The high quality of visitors is easy to understand as Franchise India undertakes massive promotional campaigns with full page ads in leading dailies. The show management, conducting of conference, each aspect is high class. Moreover, making sure that each visitor has to buy a subscription of The Franchising World (TFW) or The Retailer makes sure that the quality of visitors is very high. NG: How do you think the brands’ participation in the event would contribute to the brand’s growth? AP: We have sourced more than 50 per cent of our franchisees from FROs. Presto presently has78 stores, out of which 58 are franchised. I would say that FROs have been a preferred mode of franchise promotion for us amongst other alternatives like magazine ads, newspaper ads etc. FROs have been especially helpful for us as our products have to be seen to be believed. NG: What advice would you like to give to the entrepreneurs and investors aspiring to participate in the show to get maximum benefits from it? AP: I would advise the new entrepreneurs to first ensure that they have something worth and appropriate for franchising. I am sure a good franchise consultant like FranCorp will be of a great help here. Once you think you are beyond that stage, its time to give it your best shot. The show itself cannot cover up your own shortcomings - In terms of your format, business plan, your presentation or lack of experience. You have to dig deep and I would say that continuity is very important. Many new franchisors shut an option as soon the first participation draws a blank. I think we got our first Presto franchisee in our 3rd FRO show.