Parcel delivery franchises – what are the opportunities?

We take a look at the franchise opportunities in the sector...

Last year, in an attempt to expand its European operations, FedEx had reached a ‘conditional agreement’ to buy Dutch rival TNT Express.

With a continuing boom in e-commerce, it’s not surprising that the parcel delivery industry is thriving, or that FedEx want a bigger slice of it.

While FedEx and TNT are two of the largest global courier and parcel delivery businesses, the bucks aren't just in big business – smaller parcel delivery franchises are enjoying a lucrative share of the market.

We take a look at opportunities in the parcel delivery franchise industry.

Mail Boxes Etc.

Not only do Mail Boxes Etc. have over 1,500 stores in five continents; they are also a recognised and trusted brand with a large team of experts. Having been a high-street name for 35 years, they are confident in the industry.

There are multiple revenue streams; for example auction room delivery, student luggage delivery, printing, and mail box rental.

No prior experience is needed to become a franchisee (though they are expected to be ‘independent, committed, positive-minded people who want to make a success of their business’) and a support package is provided, including:

- Pre-opening, site location and lease negotiation

- Finance assistance and business planning

- Area operational support

- Training

- National marketing support

Key clients of the brand include auction house Sotheby’s and Nike, and they are full members of the BFA (British Franchise Association).

‘Having been involved in a business venture before, I understand how difficult and complicated it can be to set up your own business,’ franchisee Karl Lowe says.

"This time, I was looking for something with a brand, structure and organisation behind it. I liked the idea of working in partnership and developing a business through franchising. I decided that Mail Boxes Etc. would fit with my existing skillset and I liked the idea of the different services they provide."

An initial, up-front investment of around £60,000 is required to become a Mail Boxes Etc. franchisee, though up to 70% can be funded by a high-street bank. In this case, the initial personal investment will be around £20,000.

Interlink Express

Launched in 1979 and wholly owned by La Poste, the second largest postal group in Europe, Interlink Express is the UK’s leading franchised next day UK and International parcel delivery company.

The franchise network generates a turnover in excess of £180m per year, and are fully-certified members of the BFA.

While Interlink Express don’t ask for any specific qualifications in order to become a franchisee, they’re looking for those who possess and demonstrate the following skills:

- Customer focus

- High level of integrity

- Commercial expertise

- Excellent interpersonal skills

- Commitment and hard work

- Project management

- Good understanding of finance

- Business leader

- Supportive family background

- Management experience

- Team player

- Strong sales abilities

Upon becoming a franchisee, Interlink Express provide full and ongoing assistance via operational support teams, field sales, customer relations teams, telesales and a dedicated franchise department.

In order to be become an Interlink franchisee there is an upfront franchise fee of £17,500 + VAT. The initial investment, which covers an agreement period of 10 years, will be from £50,000 to £75,000.

Pack & Send

Having originated in Australia in 1999, the Pack & Send franchise began trading in the UK in 2009. The business prides itself on the simple slogan ‘We Send Anything, Anywhere!’ and aim to provide low-cost solutions that meet any deadline for their customers.

Pack & Send were recognised by PwC and the Franchise Council of Australia as the 2007 Australian Franchisor of the Year, and are also accredited by the BFA.

Primarily, Pack & Send are looking for franchisees who are highly motivated and are willing to provide a ‘no limits’ service to customers. They also provide intensive initial training over four weeks and additional labour in the store during the first weeks of trading.

"Pack & Send is a physical business that is not going to be killed by the internet", franchisee Richard Webb says. "I like the concept and the fact that it’s new to the UK – that makes it a risk but also a great opportunity".

"Like all franchises, one gets a territory of an agreed size but, as Pack & Send is fairly new and the concentration of stores is not yet that high, to all intents and purposes I can operate in a much bigger area.  It’s a high gross margin business based on service, innovation and delivery and there just aren’t many companies nation-wide that have our skills and ability – we offer a retail service that fills a gap in the market between the high volume corporate contracts offered by the freight companies and the discounted but basic delivery services available to consumers."

A minimum investment of around £100,000 is needed, which Pack & Send can provide advice on bank financing and business planning for.  


If you’re interested in the parcel delivery franchise industry, take a look at the advice and opportunities available at

Rose Hill

About the author

Rose Hill is an in-house journalist and writes for all titles in the Dynamis stable including, and as well as other industry publications.