How a float therapy, infrared sauna and wellness centre franchise bounces out of covid!

As a 2019 'NextGen Global Award Winner', Tim Butters and Jeremy Hassell, founders of City Cave Float and Wellness Centres, give insight into how the network has coped and bounced out of COVID-19 with record trading.

How has your company, City Cave Float and Wellness been affected by COVID-19?

  • We had a mandated closure for about two months, but were lucky enough to get open a little earlier than others after some 'elbow grease' from head office to pitch our case to the QLD and NSW State Governments,
  •  It affected top line revenue for everyone, and the revenue from customers to franchisees totally stopped. Obviously with this, we stopped all fees during the period.

What key measures of support have you been giving to your franchise owners in the crisis?

  • One of our core values is communication and this was a really good opportunity to test that out, from franchisor to franchisee and vice versa,
  • We had solid and consistent communication between all in the brand.

How are you coping personally, and what support networks have you leaned on?

  • Jeremy says "I guess for me it was trying to rewire my training regime, so everyone in the world now knows that I've started running.", and Tim says "He talks about it all the time, and I'm not even kidding!",
  • The networks we've leaned on are mentors and people that we've met over the time that we respect and admire, just getting advice from them has been fantastic.

What changes do you envisage being permanent beyond the crisis?

  • We find this a funny one, as beyond the crisis we are just 'business as usual'. We've always been very clean,
  • We have an isolated experience with one person in the room at a time, we don't have more than 10 people in the centre at any one time, and our cleaning procedures have been fantastic,
  • "We were cleaning before it was cool",
  • Also being able to have a crisis policy in place for when this happens again in the future or something similar - we are 100% ready if it returns in the future.

What's your message to people in business trying to recover and get back on track?

  • A really good piece of advice one of our mentors has given us during a chat in the pandemic, "There is nothing basic about the basics, and this is a great time to be able to execute that kind of mentality."

Do you have a message for, or something you'd like to say to your franchise partners and network support team?

  • Tim says "For me it would be just a huge thank you to everybody in our network, in particular our head office staff. Everybody came into this development mindset and all picked up different job roles, and everyone worked together for a really strong re-launch."
  • Jeremy says "I just want to say thank you as well, because during some of our late night zooms with wine and cheese we got to learn a little bit more, and heard some funny stories from our franchisees that I'm probably never going to forget, and it'll come out at conference this year, or at every year there after. You know who you are!"