Business Profiles

by The Seasons Art Class

last updated 09/12/2021


Drawing On Experience

by The Seasons Art Class

last updated 09/12/2021


Seasons Art Class areas are going fast

David Craggs working on curriculum design with Seasons Principal Tutor, Ashleigh Blake

If the idea of making $45,000 profit for working one day a week sounds attractive, how about earning $90,000 for two days a week – with no additional investment required?

‘That’s the reality for many of our franchisees now, even in the midst of a pandemic,’ says David Craggs, master franchisor for Seasons Art Class. ‘With a clear run next year, we’re expecting them to see even more growth – all for an initial investment of just $57,000 +gst. But opportunities are nearing capacity, so if you want to be part of it, call me now and let’s meet. Oh, and if you can, bring your accountant to verify that it’s not “too good to be true.”’

David and his business partner Moira Hall brought Seasons to New Zealand three years ago, having been involved with the business from the very start. Founded in the UK in 2009, Seasons is a step-by-step class with a well-proven curriculum of 14-week, 3-hour classes that provide a place for students to learn techniques in a range of media from qualified tutors, and develop their art skills in a sociable, relaxed setting.

‘We arrange the tutors, programmes, advertising, recruitment, venue and training, while franchisees promote and run the classes. Classes are limited to about 20 participants a time, encouraging individual tuition and the growth of friendships and support, and start at just under $700 for a 14-week course. The result is a well-proven and very profitable business model.’

Opportunities like this don’t come up every day

Chris Hubbard agrees. Having had a few businesses of his own before a career in tertiary education, Chris ended up as CEO of a private training establishment with 120 staff before taking a step back to contract as a programme designer. ‘But I wanted to do something different so, after a lot of thought and prayer, I decided to look at franchises. Seasons stood out for me – it was a sensible investment level, and related to my backgrounds in the creative industries and adult education.’

Chris rang David – and hit a problem. ‘My wife (also called Moira) and I wanted Waikato, where we live, but we were too late. The territory had just been sold, so David suggested Tauranga instead. I said “no”, but after thinking about it I realised that we wanted to move to Tauranga eventually anyway, and that opportunities like this don’t come up every day. I rang him back and got the information.

‘It all stacked up so we bought both East and West Tauranga territories. When I did a risk analysis, the biggest concern was the pandemic, but if you can’t run classes, there are no ongoing costs: no rent, no wages – even the fixed franchise fee stops if there are no courses. With Seasons helping me recruit a tutor and host, I could run a lot of the set-up and recruitment online – and Tauranga is only a 90 minute drive away.’

Almost full already

With the Auckland lockdown, Seasons had to be adaptable, resulting in Chris having to do all his training online – in fact, at the time of writing, he still hadn’t met David in person. The unexpected Waikato lockdown also prohibited his driving to Tauranga to arrange the courses there but with the first two classes under his (remote) belt, he says, ‘Everything is running smoothly, which is amazing for a new business. It’s a testament to how good the system is! With Seasons arranging the marketing plan, we had 38 bookings for our first morning and afternoon classes. As the maximum is 20 per class, we were actively trying to slow bookings, but interest is so strong we’re planning to run an evening class, too.

‘The courses attract all sorts of people who have always wanted to do art but never had the time or opportunity. Seasons helps them learn the skills systematically and takes them through a process that will lead to their first-ever exhibition. All the programmes are extremely professional, the material is first-class and each course leads on to the next one, with maybe half the students returning each time and new ones joining. You can’t find a comparable course anywhere in New Zealand.’

Don’t miss out

Chris is very happy with his choice. ‘Although we still haven’t actually met, the support from Seasons has been outstanding. They have bent over backwards to make this work, and I couldn’t be more impressed.

‘I’m still doing tertiary programme design work at the moment, with Seasons as an extra source of income, but eventually we will move to Tauranga and this will be our lifestyle business. With classes at three or four sites, we can enjoy a comfortable income and there is no time limit – we can do this for years.’

David Craggs says that Seasons has proved so popular, the remaining territories around the country are being snapped up fast. ‘We are specifically looking for people in Palmerston North, Wellington, Blenheim, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin, Invercargill, Queenstown and Wanaka. If you love people and art, and have good organisational ability, then we’d love to talk to you. These opportunities are strictly limited, so don’t miss out – call me now.’  

See this advertorial on page 23 of Franchise New Zealand magazine Year 30 Issue 4

Contact details for The Seasons Art Class

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