Brazilian Beauty was first opened in 2004, after CEO Francesca Webster saw an opportunity to improve on the systems, policies, procedures, culture, and training within the industry. Ms. Webster proceeded to open 3 additional company-owned stores within a 15-month period, after which it was decided that any further stores would benefit most from individual ownership. Brazilian Beauty’s first franchise was sold in 2006, and the company has since expanded to 21 stores throughout Australia.
A comprehensive range of beauty treatments is available through Brazilian Beauty, from day-to-day beauty basics to eyelash and brow treatment, to advanced skin treatments such as dermal rolling, LED skin rejuvenation, and IPL skin rejuvenation, and hair removal in the form of waxing and IPL, for a more permanent effect.
“Our philosophy at Brazilian Beauty is that the client is king,” says Francesca. “We treat our team members and franchisees as we would a client.” Ms. Webster feels that many people purchase a franchise either as their first business, or to take on a business with an established, recognised brand, as well as operational support. The company also remains heavily involved with its franchisees through every step of their business journeys, from the selection of their location, organisation of their shopfitter, and the recruitment and training of their team members, in addition to ongoing support even after the store is opened, to ensure continued success.
While many of the company’s competitors are highly specialised in a single treatment area, Brazilian Beauty specialises in 4, looking after its clients from head to toe. “We put a lot of effort into our customer journey,” Francesca explains, “and we take a lot of feedback from our customers to make sure that we’re providing the right products and services.” Another key factor that differentiates Brazilian Beauty from its counterparts is its strong sense of community. “We’re a people-focused business,” Francesca says, “from the customer journey to the franchisee journey.” Brazilian Beauty is also known as an early adopter of new technology at both a customer level, continuously searching for the latest TGA-approved technology to deliver results to clients at an affordable price, as well as franchisee level systems and infrastructure, using products such as SalesForce as a customer relationship management software. “We’re constantly communicating and gaining insights from our customers, in order for us to both service them better and keep our franchisees informed about their business.”
Both Brazilian Beauty and Francesca herself have been recognised repeatedly by numerous organisations and awards groups. The company won the Brisbane Lord Mayors Business Award 2014, as well as the Queensland Commonwealth Bank Small Business Award and multiple awards for customer service at a local level. In addition to receiving FCA Women in Franchising Award, Ms. Webster has also ranked as a finalist in both the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur Program and the Telstra Business Women’s Awards.
The creation of strong and long-lasting relationships is an ongoing priority for Brazilian Beauty in order to further strengthen its brand. “Once you’ve built a great relationship with a supplier, and you have longevity, that supplier will add value to your business and the process,” says Francesca. “Like in life, business is all about relationships; once you’ve forged those bonds, and people have an understanding of your business, it means that if an opportunity arises, you’ve got a great support team around you to execute that idea.”
Francesca feels that the greatest changes that the industry will face within the coming year will be due to new government legislation regarding IPL and laser hair removal technologies. “Our industry isn’t well regulated;” she says, “there’s more legislations and regulations coming in and I think that’ll cause a big change, but I think a change for the better.”
Originally from an IT background, Francesca previously worked for such companies as Morgan Stanley, the BBC, and Shell, prior to her decision to move to Australia in search of a new business opportunity. “I settled on the beauty industry because I saw real potential for growth in the health and wellness sector,” she says. “I wanted a business that I could not only own and enjoy the process and the people within the business, but also just a business where I could apply my skills.” While currently possessing 21 locations, Francesca hopes to increase that number to 30 by the end of 2017. Ms. Webster also looks forward to the further development of Australian Skin Institute, her second established brand. “It’s a fresh, preservative-free skincare range, vertically integrated into Brazilian Beauty brand.”