The UK’s top 100 franchises revealed

The Elite Franchise Top 100 in association with HSBC recognises the brightest franchisors, from long-standing brands to budding business paving their way into the sector. Now in its third year, the EF100 ranks those who have performed outstandingly well based on a broad selection of criteria including the mentoring and ongoing support of their franchisees, their position in the marketplace and future plans and strategy for the business.

The best in British franchising were honoured at a gala dinner celebration on January 30 at the HSBC headquarters in Canary Wharf. The evening kicked off with a speech from Scott English, Brand Director at Elite Franchise, who congratulated franchisors for their incredible successes.

“The judging was more difficult than ever and those franchisors who made it into the top 100 can be incredibly proud of their achievements – you are all a credit to the UK franchise industry. The calibre of the 2020 list showcases the opportunities for entrepreneurs from all walks of life. Well-established international brands and home-grown concepts alike continue to offer robust and proven routes to market for prospective business owners.”

The coveted number one spot went to automotive giant, Snap-on Tools, whilst other brands in the top 10 included business coaching brand, ActionCOACH, at number four; in-home tutoring company, Tutor Doctor, at number seven and children’s performing arts school, StageCoach at number 10.


Andrew Brattesani head of HSBC Franchising said that despite the economic challenges of the last three years, franchising continued to grow across the board.

“In what was a difficult year for business, franchising remained resilient. Literally hundreds of brave souls chose to take control of their own future and start their own business with a franchise. At HSBC, that looks like 1.82 deals done every business day for the whole of 2019. And, since the final decision around Brexit was made in December, we’ve seen an influx of enquiries in the franchise team from those people looking to secure funding for their franchise – it would seem that, in many people’s minds, the period of great uncertainty is coming to an end and decisions are now once again being made to invest in franchise ownership. I’m proud to support the EF100 in continuing to recognise ethical, successful and innovative franchisors from all industries.”

Keynote speaker, Alana Spencer, winner of BBC’s The Apprentice in 2016 and owner of successful cake brand, Ridiculously Rich, shared her inspirational story with the EF100 winners. From becoming a self-taught chocolatier at the tender age of 16 and renting her first bakery, to securing a £250,000 investment from Lord Sugar. Ridiculously Rich now has over 50 franchisees across the UK and, in October 2019, moved into its first purpose-built bakery in Alana’s hometown of Aberystwyth.

“Franchising my business has been brilliant. Our franchisees now not only go out and sell at events, they also work with us to build their own portfolio of wholesale customers so cafés, delis, farmer shops and some of them even have national accounts they manage. The opportunities that this industry provides are incredible and I’m delighted to be here tonight celebrating with you all.”

To view the EF Top 100 winners for 2020, visit Entry for the 2021 list opens August 2020.