The Hummingbird Bakery will be launching an international franchise scheme, with hopes to open its first global store in the Middle East this year.
After announcing plans to open a fifth store later this month in Angel, Islington, the London-based bakery has confirmed it will be opening outlets overseas in 2012. It will provide 12 weeks of training to franchisees in its UK kitchens and shops, using the same equipment and recipes.
Tarek Malouf, owner of The Hummingbird Bakery, said: "We’ve had serious interest and money from this location (Middle East), but we are looking to open anywhere worldwide with a good franchise partner that would have a high level of funding and commitment to the brand. Stores would have 95% of the same offering as our London locations as this is what most of our customers want. So it is a huge responsibility to train franchisees to the same high standard as UK staff. We would audit franchisees several times a year so we are happy with the quality of products."
Malouf added that plans were imminent to open a further one or two cupcake bakeries in London this year, with Canary Wharf, Chiswick, Kingston and Richmond as potential locations. In addition, The Hummingbird Bakery is looking to expand UK-wide in the near future, but would need the appropriate financial backing.
Malouf said: "We would love to open outside London, but it is not as easy as it sounds. When we open new branches, we have to ensure our quality remains throughout. So our product development team needs to be able to easily travel to locations.
"We would need to fund and develop a regional support team, so for the time being we will be concentrating on London."