Former graphic designer, Lee Thompson who launched his specialist Swegway and hoverboard superstore,is now set to launch his first franchise.
Lee has achieved his most successful trading year to date – reaching £1 million in turnover.
More than half his annual turnover was taken in the last quarter of 2018 and with the TraffordCity store, inside Beyond next to the Chillfactore, continuing to be the only store of its kind in the UK, customers’ frequently travel from as far as London and Inverness to purchase his products.
Its record trading year coincides with the first anniversary of the store’s unique Hoverboard World race track and party room which a staggering 3,000 children attended throughout 2018. Bookings for the first quarter of this year continue to be in high demand among five to 15-year-old children.
“The idea for the Hoverboard World party track evolved from the many requests we had to try out the hoverboards in the Breezeboard Pro store before customers’ purchased. It takes about 15 minutes to get the hang of the product and we couldn’t safely accommodate such requests. We thought if we had a designated, safe track it would solve the issue. We quickly realised there was a very high demand to take the try-outs to a new level and develop hoverboard parties. The kids absolutely love it.”
Lee’s business model of combining the store, in-house work shop, exceptional customer service and post-sale support alongside the Hoverboard World party offer has proved to be a winning formula and he is now keen to replicate the concept across the UK.
Lee added: “I’m passionate about making Hoverboard World a national brand but I need the manpower to do it. I’m now developing franchise opportunities across the length and breadth of the UK including, Scotland, Newquay and the Isle of Man and we’re very close to securing the first in Halifax.”
Despite Hoverboard World’s current success, Lee and his investors, who capitalised on the emerging popularity of Swegways by first launching an online store in 2015, didn’t take it for granted.
Lee added “Within weeks of going online we had secured £540,000 in sales and had invested in over 12,000 units. Then disaster struck. Headlines started to emerge of other inferior sourced products having safety issues and the authorities immediately banned the sale of all Swegway products in the UK. We had to let customers down, refund sales and effectively lost our million-pound investment overnight. It was devastating.”
However, Lee and his team of investors did not let this setback deter them and were confident in the integrity of their product and within six months had ensured their Swegway had undergone independent, UK (UKAS) inspection and verification for compliance and safety. Breezeboard Pro was rubber stamped as completely safe by the authorities in May of 2016. Since then, Breezeboard Pro have gone from strength to strength and become the industry standard in the UK.
Lee added: “Our product was the only UK verified safe Swegway available in the UK at the time but we needed to build up consumer confidence. During a visit to the Chillfactore in August 2016, I spotted a vacant unit and felt our leisure orientated product would be good a good fit for the now called “Beyond” centre. We only had 16 different products to showcase and I was advised by many to just focus on the online sales. I knew consumers needed the reassurance of going into a store to ask all kinds of questions to gain confidence and peace of mind before purchasing, as well as tap into aftercare and support if they needed it.”
Lee hasn’t looked back and despite continuing to have a thriving online presence, a unique store and race track experience, his sights are firmly set on rolling out the “Hoverboard World” concept across the UK.
You can find out more about Hoverboard world by clicking this link >>> https://www.hoverboardworld.co.uk/