This month we’ve had Be The Boss back at Roly’s Fudge Pantry to talk to one of our Roly’s Fudge franchisees about their experience opening their very own traditional fudge pantry.
After interviewing Matt and Shelley, the owners of Roly’s Fudge Salcombe, Polperro, Plymouth and Dartmouth, Be The Boss visited Roly’s Fudge in Salisbury to find out all about making the perfect fudge – and running the perfect business!
Sarah and Steven, owners of Roly’s Fudge Salisbury:
“Prior to Roly’s I ran a PR and marketing business with Sarah. We got rather bored sitting at our computers talking through our fingers as everyone does now, and we work with a lot of celebrity chefs and I spent a lot of time writing about food, and I thought – wouldn’t it be nice to actually make some food?
“Time marches on and you have your children and you want to do different things – Sarah and I converted an old barn together by scratch, and we sat around this ginormous barn looking at each other – thinking, what do we do now? Out of all our friends that we told we were going into fudge, I can only think of two that haven’t laughed.
“My favourite thing is that I don’t get grumpy customers, I’ve only had two complaints in a year – it’s a really fun business, and we’re now getting some freedom not to be in the business every day.”
“Before I went into Roly’s Fudge Pantry at Brighton, I actually really didn’t like fudge – I had only experienced fairground fudge, so to suddenly taste fudge as it should be – crumbly, melt in the mouth – I thought, wow, I want to do this.
“Every aspect of the Roly’s Fudge model is pretty perfect – it works. There are now 30 fudge pantries around the country and all we had to do was find the perfect location. A perfect location for a fudge pantry is somewhere where there’s a lot of footfall throughout the year and a high percentage of visitors.
“The only quiet months are January, when everyone is guilt tripping about how much fudge they ate at Christmas.
“Stonehenge is very close by, and we decided to run a competition in the summer and created our first Fudgehenge. The first time we ran a competition to guess the weight which we ran through the summer, and we’ve brought it back again when people came back and said ‘Where’s Fudgehenge’?”
“I think if you’re prepared to almost take a leap of faith in the dark, no matter how old you are – people have described this as our midlife crisis! – you are just so richly rewarded.”