The Driving Force Behind BDC Partners

The Driving Force Behind BDC, Bruce McFarlane, David Lindsay & Jon Sully

BDC Partners launches with industry’s first consolidated retail service for management and growth of franchises and SMEs

Launched by David Lindsay, Blue Rock Group and BDC Property Partners, BDC Partners will offer the only one-stop solution in the market to support retailers during a pivotal shift in the economy.

Australia, 29 July 2020 – With Australia on the verge of an entrepreneurial boom larger than we’ve seen since the Menzies era, David Lindsay, BlueRock and BDC Property Partners announces the launch of BDC Partners. BDC Partners is set to offer the industry’s first consolidated retail service for the management and growth of franchises and SMEs. It will have the capability to take a retail or franchise business from concept to exit.

The announcement comes amidst a pivotal shift for the economy when many Australians are looking towards starting businesses that fit with a post-COVID-19 lifestyle that is more locally focused for work and leisure. To create this local combination of livelihoods and lifestyle, franchise and small business appeal is increasing to an ever-broadening market.

BDC Partners will offer the only service of its kind in the market to complete the missing integrated link between franchisors, franchisees, landlords and lenders. BDC Partners will work with all four to build profitability and longevity rather than retailers and franchises needing to navigate and deal with multiple agencies.

BlueRock CEO Bruce McFarlane said that this service launches at a critical time for the sector, with record-breaking enquiries for new business and a huge entrepreneurial boom which has already started in Australia.

SEEK Business data reports that on top of record new business enquiries in May, June was significantly bigger, with visits increasing by 21% and enquiries up by 45% year-on-year respectively.

“With many people either choosing to or forced into career changes, or making lifestyle decisions due to COVID-19, we expect more and more Australians will turn to small business and franchises to create their own opportunities and generate income. However, the wealth and employment creation ‘engine’ that is small business and the crucial franchise sector is facing many headwinds and needs to be activated to get the economy moving again,” said Mr McFarlane.

Franchise Business traffic

“Three of the biggest ‘enterprise-side’ issues the franchise sector is facing if it is to fulfill its potential in supporting economic recovery in Australia are: finding the right retail location and service areas, recruiting new knowledgeable and enterprising franchisees, and securing affordable finance for the business. BDC Partners will solve all of these issues. Our services are all underpinned by joint ventures with data-backed insight from location mapping software GapMapsAssociated Projects shopfitters and BlueRock accounting, finance, insurance and legal firm.

“In addition, BDC Partners will use FRANdata’s independent auditing to rate and provide transparency to potential franchisees and lenders. This service will offer valuable insights that help take much of the guesswork out of franchise selection and expansion,” said Mr McFarlane.

According to figures by Griffith University[1], the number of franchise brands in Australia grew rapidly Fran Data Graphover the past two decades but the sector began to consolidate during the global financial crisis from 2008 to 2010. Recovery since the GFC has been steady, driven primarily by the slowdown in the retail sector. However, with increasing levels of consumer confidence together with the low inflation and low interest rates environment, the sector has stabilised. Based on the existing linear trend, the number of franchise brands in Australia is predicted to grow to 1,344 brands by end 2020. However, this projection may be impacted by COVID-19.

Jon Sully, Partner and Founder, BDC Partners, said, “Right now franchisors are under cash-flow pressure, and many do not have the marketing budget to locate and recruit the right franchisees to expand their business. This is particularly the case in Victoria right now with the second COVID-19 shutdown.

“Similarly, franchisees may not have the resources to choose the right franchise business or obtain the cash-flow required to start up. Because of COVID-19, the franchise sector needs more support than ever,” said Mr Sully.

BDC Partners aims to eliminate these issues for retailers and franchises by utilising their depth of resources and skills to get the business growing again.

David Lindsay, Partner and Head of Franchise Recruitment, BDC Partners, concluded, “Our mission is simple: to execute on the vision of retailers and franchises, and to provide first-class support when systems and brands are contending with COVID-constrained resourcing.”

[1] Data from the Franchising Australia 2016 survey, which was conducted by researchers from Griffith University’s Asia-Pacific Centre for Franchising Excellence from July to August 2016.

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