Q&A with Huxtaburger CEO, Matt Fickling
Matt, can you tell us a little more about your involvement in Huxtaburger?
Perth born, I have had a very rewarding career in the lead up to my appointment as CEO of Hux Group. I have had experience across multi-site retail businesses, with exposure to currency exchange, supermarkets, cafe-bakery brands and food retail categories.
I am very humbled and appreciative of the support that my Board of Directors have shown me in my appointment as CEO; it reflects and marks the transformation of Huxta from a single site destination model to a multisite food franchise brand poised for national growth.
What led to the expansion of Huxtaburger in your hometown of Perth?
While researching for our expansion we identified a huge opportunity to take on the Perth market. With our quality product and unique brand, we could see that we had something different to offer than what was currently available. We couldn’t wait to get started and introduce Perth to the Huxtalife!
The decision to move to Perth has paid dividends with Huxtaburger Hibernian Place being easily one of our most successful openings ever. The Perth CBD location has far exceeded expectations, quickly becoming our highest performing store in Australia.
We look forward to opening in Fremantle very soon! We have secured an iconic location at Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour, right next to Little Creatures and renowned eateries such as, Kailis Fish Market and Cicerellos. Everyone in WA has eaten lunch or dinner there by the water at some point in their lives. Freo’s restaurant and bar culture, sea views and sunset beers ooze the Huxtalife. Hungry partiers, locals, travellers and students will all be lining up ready to smash a burger!
Are there further expansion plans for Western Australia?
We are very excited by this market. There will only be limited opportunities in WA with our intentions to secure sites in Leederville, Mandurah, Victoria Park, Mount Lawley and Scarborough. We are currently speaking to potential franchise partners about these locations and expansion plans over the next few years.
The Huxtaburger store count has grown tremendously in the past 12 months, what are your goals for the year ahead?
We are currently speaking with landlords all around Australia! Our entry into the Sydney market will commence in July 2018. We have a big announcement coming up about our roll out in NSW, with plans to pipeline 12 stores over the next few years in that state alone. It’s a really exciting time!
What’s the long-term plan for the Hux Group?
Our goal is to grow to 50 Huxtaburger locations throughout Australia within the next 5 years. We also aim to extend our network internationally into New Zealand and Asia – We’re ready to share our mouth-watering product with the world!
How does the recruitment process work and how do potential franchisees get involved?
We worked with our franchising partner, DC Strategy on our franchise program for 12 months and developed an industry best practice franchise system. Over the past year we have been working with James Young, who heads up the recruitment department, who has been actively involved in our expansion plans, identifying relevant candidates and qualifying potential leads. This has seen us grow to 10 locations in three states.
Find out more about Huxtaburger’s franchising plans at – www.franchise.dcstrategy.com/huxtaburger