How to buy a fish and chip shop

Buying a Fish & Chip Shop

Should you start a fish and chip shop or buy an existing business for sale?

It’s one of our national dishes, wedged somewhere between a good curry and a Sunday roast. British fish and chips are world renowned, the industry has its own Federation of Fish Fryers and is celebrated with a dedicated day of recognition, held on the first Friday in June every year. It’s a tasty meal with mass appeal and has stayed popular with a hungry nation, despite the influx of other international convenience cuisines. There are 10,500 fish and chip shops trading across the UK – almost ten times more than there are McDonalds. So, if you’re in the market for a booming business – one that serves up the nation’s original fast food – you could do far worse than buy a fish and chip shop.

Where do you begin, though? Should you start a fish and chip shop, or should you buy an existing business for sale? Starting a business from scratch is a tricky proposition, and poses more risk than buying a fish and chip shop that has a trading history of its own. That said, if you want to create something unique and have spotted a genuine gap in the market close to you, starting your own fish and chip shop could be the right thing to do.

Like any new business, though, you need to make sure you do your research first and leave no stone unturned. Why isn’t there a fish and chip shop in your area already? Is it because nobody has thought of it before, or is it because there is simply no demand? Perhaps the rent and rates are too punitive, or there’s a restriction on the type of businesses that can be operated in that area. Don’t be put off too quickly, as most entrepreneurs have had to break down barriers. But don’t be reckless either as, if your heart is set on running a fish and chip shop of your own, buying an existing business could be a much safer alternative.

You could buy a traditional fish and chip shop that sticks to a tried and tested formula. Cod, haddock and maybe some scampi. Chips, mushy peas and curry sauce for those with more exotic tastes! But you can’t have failed to notice that plenty of fish and chip shops these days provide a more continental – even international – menu choice. Key to knowing which fish and chip shop to buy, then, is knowing your customer base. Buy a fish and chip shop at the seaside, and your customer will expect the traditional fare. Find a fish and chip shop for sale in a hip and trendy part of a city – or close to student accommodation, and you might wish to expand your nightly wares.

Buying a business is exciting, but do make sure you spend time going through detailed due diligence. Take advice from those who know the industry, and be prepared for some lifestyle changes. Then, if you’re ready, your next task is to find a fish and chip shop for sale close to you. Business transfer agents will have plenty of food-related businesses on their books, or you could take a look at what’s available in your area on DaltonsBusiness.

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How to buy a fish and chip shop