People profile: KC and JC Singh, 7-Eleven Wendouree

05 March 2020

Inside Franchise Business

Jatinderpal and Kamaljeet Cheema, (JC and KC), have joined 7-Eleven Australia as franchisees of 7-Eleven Wendouree. 

The pair arrived in Australia in 2008. After living in Melbourne for four years, they decided a tree change would give them the lifestyle they wanted. 

“We lived in Melbourne for four years. We realised that life in regional Australia has lots of benefits. We chose Ballarat as it is a beautiful city, and moved here in 2012. Everything is great, schools, public hospitals, affordable housing, and a better lifestyle in general,” KC says.

The pair are excited by the opportunity to grow the new store with the support of the community.

“The community is lovely. Everyone knows each other and is there to support you to grow,” JC says.

7-Eleven offers a good lifestyle

The husband and wife duo are highly experienced in retail management, working for major organisations in Melbourne and Ballarat. As busy parents, owning a business was an attractive choice. 

“We want a good lifestyle and flexibility to look after our son. Customer service is one of our strengths and we wanted to use that to benefit our family,” KC said. 

“We had experience in retail and retail management but wanted to get into business for ourselves. We found that there was a 7-Eleven opening in Wendouree. It was the opportunity we were waiting for. 

“We did more research on 7-Eleven, it’s a worldwide, reputable brand. The support and training you get are important. There’s structure and support with recruiting and hiring. Being part of the 7-Eleven system is a good help for you to start the business.” JC says.

JC and KC applied to franchise 7-Eleven Wendouree in March 2019. 

“Since we applied we’ve had lots of contact from the franchise development managers and state manager. The company has been supportive of us through the process which is there to make sure we were capable of giving 100 per cent to the store. Going through that process has given us more confidence in ourselves,” JC says.

JC also completed formal store leader training.

“The training once you have been accepted into the system is good. The eight week training is very helpful as it’s in person and in store. You learn the 7-Eleven way of doing things, as well as things to help achieve our goals.”

JC said the shift to a 24/7 convenience offer was not a big adjustment. 

“We’ve been managers before, taking calls 24/7, organising shifts, doing what we can to make the store great. But if you are going to work really hard, why not do it for ourselves to give us a better return and a good future for our family?” 

The two will work in the store, and wanted to ensure their team were equally customer focused. 

“We’ve made sure we have a team that gives their best, they smile all the time, and give a great experience in a clean and tidy store,” KC says.

7-Eleven franchise support

While every business comes with some risk, being part of the 7-Eleven network helps to mitigate that for JC and KC.

“There are many benefits to franchising. You can make mistakes, so a well-structured system is important. You have professional advice and there’s someone you can call to get help to solve problems,” KC says.

“With a family, you need some security. The minimum guaranteed income support from 7-Eleven was reassuring,” JC says.

“I think that it’s really positive that you can see what’s happening in your store financially. You can see results and then reach that bit higher, working with your team to improve. We have competition but our customers tell us they are happy to come here as everyone is always really lovely,” KC adds.  

Being able to share knowledge and get guidance from peers in the 7-Eleven franchise network was an added bonus.

“You can use the network, talk to others across the country and they will help you. It’s a like a big community. Someone said to us when we joined ‘welcome to the big family’ which was a very good thing for us,” KC concludes.

7-Eleven Australia is continuing to grow in regional Australia. The next available regional opportunity is expected to be in Colac, Victoria. 

Read more at Inside Franchise Business.