Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  26 May 2011

FRANCHISE: ooba Launches New Franchise Brand


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Cape Town bond originator, ooba, has launched a new franchise brand, oobalink, that will give franchisees the opportunity to benefit from the established ooba group’s branding and national footprint. The new brand launch follows the success of ooba’s existing franchise brands, Wizard Financial Services and Quantro Homeloans, which have both assisted consumers to obtain home loans over the past 10 years, and aims to increase service provision within the mortgage origination industry.

Bradd Bendall, Head of Group Franchising at ooba, says that the success of the company’s existing franchise brands, coupled with increased positivity in the property market, indicated that the time was now right to launch a third brand that was aligned closer to the ooba brand, yet still provided all of the franchising benefits for a mid to large-sized franchise. “Our existing franchises have grown stronger, recording increased in-take figures of 39% from August 2010 to March 2011.

The growth of the local bond origination industry is backed up by recent ooba statistics, which reveal that the average number of bond applications in March was at its highest level recorded for nearly three years (since May 2008) and is 36% higher than the average monthly application in-take recorded in 2010.”

ooba currently has 42 franchise offices in place nationally and aims to increase this number with the launch of oobalink. “Proof of the sustainability of our business model is the fact that our franchises were able to survive the severe slump that the South African housing market has experienced over the past couple of years.”

Bendall says that the oobalink brand differentiates itself from the company’s existing franchise brands due to the required franchisee criteria. “As the oobalink brand is aligned closer to the ooba brand than our Wizard and Quantro franchises, it requires a higher level of existing infrastructure from potential franchisees, such as a minimum number of existing sales agents working under them, or a more prominent area footprint. Our oobalink franchisees will also be empowered to expand and control a number of sales agents, as well as increase their area footprint.”

He goes on to say that the mindset of the franchisee has also changed over the last few years. “Instead of separating themselves from the larger bond originator brands, franchisees now want to be more closely associated to ooba in order to benefit from the halo effect of this brand, its national footprint and operational capabilities. This emerging trend was one of the reasons why we have chosen to align oobalink so closely to the ooba brand.”  

Bendall says that franchisees will enjoy the advantages of owning their own business, while enjoying the benefits offered by a recognised brand. “Some of the benefits that franchisees will experience through oobalink is our national brand exposure, strong relationships with the banking sector, business and technology support, as well as increased cost effectiveness, due to the shared marketing costs.

The first oobalink franchise has opened in the Western Cape and is headed up by franchisee, Gavin Zinn. Zinn and his partners at oobalink Western Cape have in excess of 100 years combined experience in the home loan and property industry. Zinn’s main focus is on service, ensuring that home buyers deal with the very best consultants in the Western Cape. 

This is the first step in identifying key property industry players nationally to grow our group franchise network effectively,” concludes Bendall.

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