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Be Inspired- bake&TAKE

Self-service bakery ‘bake&TAKE’ is fairly new in the UK, however it has a firm grasp on the European market. First conceptualised in Germany (then named ‘backWERK’) their first store opened in 2001 and since then ‘bake&TAKE’ as it is known today, has expanded to over 320 stores across Europe including Switzerland, Romania and The Netherlands with the majority of their stores located in Germany.

bake&TAKE currently commands four locations in the UK, the newest is situated in Bury within the Rock Shopping Centre.  Opened by managers and co-owners Adnan and Ruba Jabir, the latter described as the driving force behind shop operations, have introduced Bury to the ‘oven fresh value’ that bake&TAKE prides itself on.  The husband and wife entrepreneurs have opened up a shop to rival many of the markets dominant UK sandwich and coffee shops. 

Following an investment of over £250,000 the self-service, continental sandwich and coffee bar looks set to revolutionise the quick-service food availability in Bury.  Ruba and Adnan commented on the opening of their new franchise “We are extremely proud to bring this wonderful concept to Bury.  The bake&TAKE model is truly unique to the UK combining a fine brand of coffee along with an impressive selection of delicious continental sandwiches, savouries and sweet products,” They continued “home to many great bakeries and bakery products, along with its vibrant shopping centre, Bury is the ideal place for us to bring this new concept.

It seems that the secret to bake&TAKE’s success and also what sets them apart from its rivals is the freshness of its products.  Many of their products arrive frozen and are baked fresh each morning.  Their food repertoire consists of over 250 products including fresh coffee, wraps, doughnuts and pastries.  They also provide a variety of bread for their daily selection of fresh sandwiches, from baguettes and flatbreads to German Kaiser rolls, in an appreciated nod to their German heritage.  Adnan continued “Freshness is the key ingredient, with all products baked before your eyes all day and every day, thus ensuring excellent quality,” he added “The self-service element means consumers always enjoy a quick and convenient experience in store, whether they choose to eat-in or take-away, which ultimately results in exceptional customer service standards.”

Here at Food Franchise we have been following bake&TAKE’s UK bakery revolution closely, back in Autumn 2015 we featured bake&TAKE in our ‘One to Watch.  Robin Page, one of the owners of the UK master franchise and the reason why bake&TAKE is coming to a location near you said “We believe that the offering we have, ticks the boxes for all socio-economic groups. We have something for people of all ages, tastes, budgets and above all the eat-in and takeaway options we provide are suited to the lifestyle needs of everybody.” 

The first of their franchises opened in Manchester in October 2015 and since then bake&TAKE have recruited three more franchises, opening in London, Hounslow and Lewisham, as for the future? Bake&TAKE has plans to open up to 30 new stores each year. 
Bake&TAKE’s latest venture in Bury has seen the store fitted out to an extremely high standard, with the support of the master franchisors and features seating to accommodate 75 patrons, an iPad bar and free Wi-Fi.  The Bury store aims to cater to all, mothers, pensioners, business men and anyone looking for a bite to eat are able to relax in their booth style comfy seating. 

We speak to bake&TAKE’s newest franchisee and one half of the couple who look set to shake up the coffee and bakery market in Bury, Adnan Jabir, to find out why he decided to invest in a franchise with bake&TAKE and where he plans to take the franchise in the future.

So Adnan, did you have a background in the food and drink industry prior to opening a food franchise?

No, I had no industry experience prior to bake&TAKE, however I love eating out and trying new restaurants and I have a good sense of what customers look for generally in a meal out.

What made you choose the franchise model over running an independent business?

Franchising appealed to me as I did not want to take this step alone. I needed the back up of similar minded business partners who had the framework of operationally running an eatery such as the one we signed up for.
What made Bake & Take stand out? Bake&TAKE stood out to me mainly as it is a new concept to the UK with ample opportunity to grow at a faster rate than a brand that has already saturated the market. It does mean a lot of hard and hands on work. The second reason was the back ground of the master franchisees, both Steve and Robin are veterans in this field and I felt that with their knowledge and experience, the franchise has the best chance of developing into a successful high street brand in the not too far future.

How long did the process take from making a franchise enquiry to opening your store and how did you find the process?

I started thinking about franchising back in June of 2016. We opened our store at the beginning of March 2017. So about 10 months from idea to reality.

What plans or commitments do you have to opening more sites in the future?

I am hoping that we are able to open in other locations within the next 2-3 years if all goes in the right direction.

How did you fund the venture and how easy was it to secure the capital?

Funding was a combination of a high street bank loan and my own savings. Securing the funding from the bank was straight forward for me but this is dependent on the applicant and individual circumstances.  This is one aspect of it, the other is a sound realistic business plan which is crucial, this is something that the franchisor will help with.

Why would you recommend franchising to others? There are many advantages to franchising, as you are able to benefit from a groups experience who all have one goal in mind.  Namely to help you succeed and to grow the franchise into a recognisable brand. When you need the help, it is there. You have a sounding board for ideas and in the case of bake&TAKE, they have shown flexibility in helping to develop the brand to fit the needs of the UK public.

How would you describe the market at the moment in terms of demand, number of stores, competition and growth?

The UK loves coffee and food, the demand is there and is only set to grow. There is nothing quite like the bake&TAKE experience and this in itself creates a niche that combines a great coffee shop with a great bakery. There are some that will compare us to Greggs and some that may compare us to Costa, however, we are neither, we have taken the best of both and added a twist which differentiates us and creates its own appeal.

With the recent announcement regarding Bake&TAKE’s plans to open 100 new stores in the next 5 years, it looks as if this German brands takeover of the UK bakery and coffee market is moving quickly.  With awards under its belt such as Franchisor of the Year in 2011 and a Franchise Bakery Award in 2013, bake&TAKE certainly have the backing of industry voices.  Robin and Steve have worked hard over the last two years developing new supplier relationships, building efficiency, carrying out customer research and product testing, ensuring the business model and procedures are in place to give UK franchisees the very best platform for success. 

Wednesday, 31st May, 2017
MVH Media
Food Franchise