Cartridge Depot is Franchising
Cartridge Depot is a printer cartridge retailer currently operating a total 16 stores in the Gauteng and Witbank regions in South Africa, with a further two opening before end April 2017. The business re-manufactures, distributes and sells printer cartridges under its own Registered Trademark brand (EclipseTM) as well as purchasing, distributing and selling of original equipment manufacturer (“OEM”) cartridges, printing paper and memory devices through its own network of Cartridge Depot Stores and online through its website.
Cartridge Depot has shown immense growth and the directors are aiming to add to the network of stores by franchising mid-year 2017. Initial locations being considered are in provinces such as Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West. The rest of South Africa will be considered at a later stage.
The Cartridge Depot and Eclipse brands are ideally positioned to expand the network of stores nationally through franchising based on four fundamental success factors. These factors include:
- a well-established brand and business model,
- superior financial controls and systems,
- solid foundation in terms of operating procedures, policies and support functions as well as
- a unique value proposition based on the excellent track record for product and service offering.
When asking Martin Schermers and Manny de Canha, directors and owners of Cartridge Depot, the reason behind franchising the business they stated that: “It was always part of the business strategy to grow and expand the business to ensure our footprint grows rapidly on a national level offering the affordable Eclipse printer cartridges to a larger consumer base. We wanted to ensure that our systems , procedures and support structures were superior before rolling out to franchisees. We noticed a huge increase in demand for our product offering therefore it would be more effective for franchisees to address the needs of the consumers. This will open up a national growth strategy and in parallel we will step up our efforts on the research and development of the internal re-manufacturing process to ensure continuous new product development with exceptional quality significant environmental and cost saving benefits”
The franchise model
Cartridge Depot will provide potential franchisees with the multi-unit opportunities to apply their business acumen and experience to develop their own successful business. The directors of Cartridge Depot know that a key success factor for franchisees will be to have previous business experience coupled with prior business networks that can be leveraged to grow their stores.
They are looking for franchisees with good communication skills, sales and customer relations. Additionally, it is essential that franchisees understand that providing exceptional customer service experience along with exceptional product quality will be at the heart of the brand success.
The estimated cost of the turnkey franchise is R650 000 including stock (excluding VAT and the leasing deposit). Potential franchisees would need at least 50% of the total cost available in cash to qualify for bank financing.
Cartridge Depot was established 18 years ago by the previous owners Ivan and Irma Barkley.
From humble beginnings where the business was started in a garage, it now operates out of 1500m2 Head office located in the east of Pretoria since 2012. On 21 December 2015 Cartridge Depot shareholding was purchased by Tanditrix (Pty) Ltd, an investment company with Frank de Ornelas, Manny de Canha and Martin Schermers as shareholders. Manny and Martin are the appointed directors of Cartridge Depot and are directly involved in the day-to-day management. Cartridge Depot was converted from a Close Corporation (“CC”) to a private company (“(Pty) Ltd”) on 7 December 2015.
At the date of the transaction there were 13 Stores. Since the acquisition the network of has grown to 16 Stores with 2 additional Stores being confirmed for 1st quarter of 2017.
Production, inventory, distribution and logistics are managed and controlled from the Head Office. Each store has its own full time employees and they are supported by a support team from Head Office that visit the stores on a regular basis.
The current infrastructure at the main premises are sufficient for the planned medium term expansion with regards the re-manufacturing as well as the distribution.
The business re-manufactures, distributes and sells recycled cartridges; imports, distributes and sells compatible cartridges under its own Registered Trademark brand (EclipseTM) and purchases, distributes and sells original equipment manufacturer (“OEM”) cartridges as well as printing paper and memory devices through its own network of Cartridge Depot stores and online through its website.