From unwanted goods to prized bargains

July 2014

Today’s savvy consumer looks for better quality for less – and let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a bargain?

Lawrence and Esmarie Baird, owners of the Nelspruit Cash Converters, say people are often pleasantly surprised by the treasures they find in his shop. “Just because its second hand, doesn’t mean it’s broken. You can buy something here that’s as good as new, for two thirds or half of the price.”

The Nelspruit Cash Converters, which opened just over a year ago, has a wide range of products ranging from bird cages to the latest cell phones and laptops. “It’s amazing to see what comes in – and we seldom have to turn anything away. We’ve learned that if it’s been bought at the right price and sold at the right price, it will sell.”

A six-month guarantee on most Cash Converters products ensures that any faulty goods returned within six months will be replaced, repaired or refunded. Most of the goods brought to the shop are sold by people who are looking to replace their TVs or mobile phones with the latest models, or they want a new lounge suite. In fact, Lawrence says they sell mostly electronic items such as TVs, cell phones and even tablets. It’s a way for people to get cash quickly when they’re looking to upgrade their gadgets.

“We also provide quick cash options through our Cash Advance and PayDay Advance micro loan services,” he explains.

Cash Advance is an instant cash loan against your valuables, giving you instant cash. Goods are held for up to 30 days. If you are employed and your salary is deposited into your bank account, you can apply for PayDay Advance, a short term cash loan against your next salary. “We will give you cash and then debit your bank account on the day you are paid. You can also choose to receive your loan with the Cashies Card, a Visa debit card,” he says.

The Nelspruit Cash Converters is the only one of its kind in the lowveld and is rapidly growing into a thriving business, employing 19 local people already. A comprehensive Cash Converters training programme for franchisees and their store staff ensures a solid path of growth and an opportunity to learn important business and selling skills. “It’s very important that we upskill and uplift the people working for us,” explains Lawrence. “In fact, two domestic workers and four gardeners who used to work for me at my home are now sales staff. Three of our shop cleaners have also been promoted to sales staff. They’re showing enormous potential and an eagerness to learn and we’re honored to be part of their journey.”

It certainly is an exciting journey. After just a year of operation, Lawrence is now looking for bigger premises to accommodate the growth of the business. In the next period Lawrence and his team will also look at opening four to five more stores in the Lowveld area, as well as one in Maputo.

Lawrence says he is investigating a profit share programme that will give loyal staff an opportunity to become equity partners.

“The attention paid to constant training and staff upliftment is one of the many special features of a Cash Converters franchise, as well as the various income streams available through the selling of goods, pawn broking and quick cash options,” says Lawrence.

“I’ve researched over 2000 business, including other franchises, across different industries and the affordability and offering this franchisor offered was head and shoulder above the rest. It’s the only one that fits the bill and suits the market we’re in.”

Once Lawrence and his wife Esmarie decided on the Cash Converters franchise, he left his career in building and construction and relocated his family to Nelspruit. They haven’t looked back since.

“We feel like we are becoming entrenched in the community and we look forward to continuously serving the Nelspruit area,” concludes Lawrence.