Growing Market for Those Who Want to Stand Tall

With 80% of people having back pain at some point in their life, it makes sense consumers are looking for ways to address this growing health concern. Jonathan Hulme of Bad Backs is doing that, and providing a unique business opportunity at the same time.

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Back Pain Management

Understanding how debilitating back pain can be himself, Director Jonathan Hulme decided he wanted to provide a single source of information and products related to back pain management. While there has been a trend to shut stores and open online outlets, Bad Backs’ retail stores continue to grow. “People want to touch and feel the product”, explains Jonathan.The Bad Backs’ unique retail license model has been integral to their success.“We encourage people who really want to run their own business but aren’t sure where to start, to get involved”, says Jonathan. “We give them a simple framework and make it less prescriptive than a franchise model. You’re not buying a canned business.”

Bad Backs Retail Stores

Bad Backs retail store owners are typically “entrepreneurial people with commercial experience who want to tweak the model to suit their local market and run it like a separate business”. As well as being encouraged to use their adventurous spirit and put their hands to work, retail store owners are provided with a range of tools together with a supplier list, information on marketing demographics, advice on store design and location, commercial training, and all without the usual associated costs. The business model is deliberately broad and varied just like the stores’ products. 

“One day you could be selling a mattress, the next day a chair. You could be selling to commercial divisions or asking a physio or chiro to recommend your products”, explains Jonathan. An ageing population and people glued to screens like never before have dramatically changed the way we work and as a result our posture. 

Back pain is one of the most common reasons for visiting a GP. It’s no surprise then that a large amount of products being bought are ergonomic: standing desks to chairs that bounce and wobble. “When people enter our retail shops they say wow! Generally about so many products they’ve never seen – all in one place. We cross so many boundaries and bring everything under one umbrella. The market is evolving and moving. The consumer sees what it is and recognises that they can benefit from it”.