Three years on from the launch of their the streat franchise in Portlaoise, Roseanna and Paul Slattery are currently looking at properties for new locations.
The couple have managed to create a successful sandwich shop business despite neither of them having any previous experience in the industry, although they did receive full training from the streat head office team. Mrs Slattery said: “The training was excellent and thorough. At no stage did I think that if I asked a simple question I would end up feeling silly. From the first morning in the hotel in a strange city, Amanda my trainer arrived to walk me to the training centre so I would know the way in the future. This small gesture made such a difference to me.
“I never realised there was so much to learn about opening up a café. I still laugh to myself when I recall telling people that I was going up to Belfast to do a four-week training course to open a café franchise and their expression said it all. I could only imagine they were thinking; why is it going to take her four weeks to learn to make a sandwich? But I can verify that there is a lot more to it than that.
“Once we launched we had regular visits from our Territory Manager and we know that if we have any queries we only have to phone head office or email and we will get a quick response.”
Since launching their franchise, the couple have found that it has taken a lot of time and hard work to ensure its success, Mrs Slattery added: “I eat, sleep and drink the streat. For the moment managing my home has taken second place, but as I have become more confident in my everyday tasks at the café, I’ve managed to get back some of my quality time at home, confident in the knowledge that my team can also manage without me for a day. When I have a day off now I really enjoy it and make the most of it and always try to have something planned with the family.”
Despite the hard work involved, the couple are keen to continue expanding their business. Mrs Slattery said: “In the short term we want to make our café in Portlaoise very successful, but our long-term aim is to open many others - we are already looking at locations and we already have the streat property negotiator looking at all our options.”