Galito’s founder and CEO Louis Germishuys believes the success of its expansion into Africa boils down to keeping its philosophies simple, and sticking to a winning formula that has worked for 25 years. “Chicken is a big part of the African diet, but that’s just the basis for the opportunity. Combine that philosophy with Galito’s taste profile of flame-grilled, piri-piri flavours and you really start speaking to African consumers."
“Price points are important in Africa – if you’re not looking at your price you’re going to be in trouble. You’ve got to be competitive, but you can’t be competitive by providing an inferior product. So, you have to be better at everything you do. After a comfortable and clean store, with a warm, welcoming vibe, what’s most important is what’s on the plate and whether it’s priced right.”
The Galito’s story began in Mbombela, Mpumalanga when Germishuys opened his first outlet in 1996, expanding to the rest of the country in 2003. It was at this point that the Galito’s brand began to develop, and franchising efforts took off in earnest.
Starting out as a franchisee himself, Germishuys says he's is in a unique position as a CEO, as he knows what it’s like to stand behind the grill for days on end and he has a deep understanding of running a store from the bottom up. He understands franchisee needs and subsequently pushes for the most favourable ROIs and offers a strong head office support structure to the franchisees.
Today, Galito’s operates across four continents and in 17 countries. Within Africa, the chain has expanded its footprint into Mozambique, Zambia, Malawi, DRC, Botswana, Mauritius, Lesotho, Swaziland and, Namibia (opening soon) with more territories on the horizon.
The Galitos’ model recruits a master license franchisee for a country, from where individual franchises hatch. The company is now on the lookout for new master license agreements across African countries.
Galito’s offers different store options, including the entry-level GaliPod, for which set-up costs and ROIs are made more accessible to a larger segment of the population.
According to Germishuys, with Africa looking to develop small businesses across the continent, franchising is a great vehicle to adopt, as together with establishing strong relationships with local suppliers, ensuring staff are skilled in customer service and prudently locating the outlets, your success rate is dramatically increased.
“Covid has had a negative impact on most businesses, but you are always safer with a franchise because of the relationships and muscle that franchising brings to the party,” Germishuys concludes.