The 10 recession-proof businesses to start

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Starting up a small or medium-sized business franchise brings the built-in advantage of knowing people will be comfortable paying for tried and tested goods or services. Your customers will be attracted by the ready-made popularity, trust and reputation of the franchise name.


This slideshow gives you 10 great options for developing a business and above all, playing it safe.

Pawn shops

A simple way to make money is by pawning an item of value, with the guarantee that it is possible to buy it back in the future. It can be a situation in which everyone wins. The dividends from investing in this type of franchise are good, with an estimated profitability of above 70%. However, to achieve this you have to invest, on average, between £60,000 and £180,000. These businesses are very versatile and many go beyond the traditional buying and selling of jewellery. Many deal in electrical goods, cars and even offer services such as utility bill payments and money transfers.

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Dry cleaners

Nowadays, it is difficult to find the time to take care of our clothes, whether it be washing or ironing them. While the initial investment is above £60,000, the dry cleaning business continues to grow and there are good profits to be made (even as high as 80%). Some franchises will not only provide the basic equipment and accessories but also delivery vehicles, computer software and training for staff. You need to check what is covered in the licensing fees and what the royalties are.

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Pound shops

These types of shops sell practical or novel goods at low prices. The goods on sale range from cookware, personal grooming products and even small gifts. An important requirement of these businesses is that they are located in areas that have a lot of passing trade. This could be on a high street, retail park or next to a supermarket. One of the main advantages of this type of shop, when compared to other franchises on the market, is that both the price of the goods and the cost of the franchise is low.

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Businesses designed for children

There are lots of profitable businesses to be started in respect of providing services for children. Possible businesses range from hairdressers for youngsters, soft play areas and even nurseries for children whose parents are busy in the gym or doing other evening activities. The idea is that parents will prefer to take their children to places that have been designed with their little ones in mind. These businesses have the potential to grow rapidly if you get the atmosphere right and equip them with well trained staff, child-sized furniture, fun activities and exciting decoration.

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Pets, a lucrative business

This is more about providing products and services for pampered pets than breeding them. It is worth bearing in mind that many people look after their pets like they were a member of their family and some even go as far as caring for them as if they were their child. With this in mind, there are pet businesses which sell clothes, shoes, costumes, grooming products, organic foods and insurance policies. There are also pet nurseries and hotels and even in death they can be mourned at a pet cemetery. Without doubt, pets offer a lucrative revenue stream to be exploited. Images

Cleaning services

This is another business that appeals to the necessities of modern life and investing in this form of franchise can be profitable. It covers a wide range of areas from homes, offices, hospitals and even industrial sites. The franchise may help you with the employment and management of staff and provide you with equipment and products. Most importantly it could also provide you with a ready-made portfolio of clients.

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Shoes, a fashionable business

The footwear industry is always at the forefront of fashion. These days, it caters not only for the latest trends in women’s and men’s shoes but also for children, who can be seen sporting novel, fun and comfortable designs. This type of franchise usually provides staff training, stock management according to the season and promotion on the internet. It could be through a catalogue sales business (the most economical option) or an investment of about £60,000 in an established shop.

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Coffee shops

Coffee shops act as a meeting place for friends, somewhere to enjoy a date, talk about business or just a place to relax and have some lunch. Their popularity has grown enormously in recent times and thus they are very attractive franchises. The costs vary and range between £6,000 to £125,000 depending on the source, age and reputation of the brand. This does not mean that a brand name that is not well known cannot be profitable. Besides training, the franchise provides furniture and equipment.

Related: The health benefits of coffee

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Clothing and accessories

This is a business with a lot of opportunities. You can opt to sell clothes through a catalogue or set up your own shop. The clothes you sell could be for women, men, children or babies and there is also the option of selling specific products like lingerie, pyjamas and sizes for tall people. Whatever type of clothes you choose to sell, most can be accompanied by the sale of accessories like belts, wallets, purses, jewellery, makeup and bags. Some items that you sell could fetch hundreds of pounds depending on the make.

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Beauty products

A good business opportunity is that involving the sale of products related to personal grooming. Today, more and more people are concerned about their image and most do not want to resort to plastic surgery. The businesses that can be invested in include permanent body hair removal, beauty salons and spas. To stand out from your competitors you need to think about the location of your business, staff training, advertising and discounts.

Related: 9 Ways to make cash during a recession

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