Hannes Poley (left) and Sean Johnston are the latest to start their own Countrywide Signs business
We're proud to welcome two new business owners to our flourishing network, one taking over a resale and the other swapping South Africa for south Wales!
Hannes Poley, a retired South African police officer, has launched in Cardiff and Bridgend after moving to the UK earlier this year to be close to his family. It’s fair to say he conducted a thorough inspection of the competition before he started his new venture.
He explains: “I first looked at buying an estate agency franchise, but decided that wasn’t what I wanted to do. Then I looked at a competitor to Countrywide. But what Countrywide were offering was simply a lot better, in my opinion. The people at the central office were so responsive, we had good meetings with everyone and felt very comfortable.”
Despite the inclement November weather, it’s been far from a cold start for Hannes, who has hit the ground running thanks to Countrywide Signs’ relationships with major online and high street agencies.
Hannes says: “It’s a new territory but there’s plenty of national accounts work that we’ve taken over in the local area, which head office have transferred over to us. It’s given us a good start. After we’ve grown to add our second van, we’d like to expand outwards to Newport, Swansea, Port Talbot and so on, really take advantage of the towns around us.
“We want to make it what I call a ‘proper’ business!”
Further north and east, Sean Johnston has taken over the Stamford and South Lincolnshire territory, and has already seen the benefits of purchasing a going concern.
He said: “I have bought an existing territory which I am very lucky has been run extremely well, with an excellent customer base developed. The previous owners are working with me for a period to ensure the same level of service is maintained.
“I’ve worked in the property and construction industry for over 30 years, as a client, contractor and consultant. I decided to become a Countrywide franchisee because I wanted to run and build a business of my own and was impressed with the support, leading-edge systems and strong brand presence that Countrywide provide.
“The majority of my career has been working in and around the retail sector and I strongly believe that putting the customer first is the basis to success.”