Father and son’s sweet return on their investment
A FATHER and son who sank every penny they had into starting their first dessert bar are set to open another just four months later after its “unexpected success”.
Adam and Andrew Preddy said they ran out of money and resorted to looking down the back of the sofa for spare change after ploughing £15,000 into the venture, which was a first for Bridgend.
They assumed Frankie’s would “tick over” and be “a hobby”.
But four months and 16,000 milkshakes later the Nolton Street business, which also sells icecream, crepes, waffles and cookie dough desserts, employs 10 people.
Adam said an announcement on a second branch in the area is imminent.
“It’s mad, it’s bizarre,” said Adam, 24, who is from Bridgend.
“I invested about £15,000 in this. It was scary. Before the opening we had run out of money. We literally had zero pennies and had used up our overdrafts and maxed out credit cards.”
“If it didn’t work it would have been a different story.”
Adam said they took on the premises with the intention of using it as offices for his cleaning busi- ness and his dad’s handyman service.
But once they had the keys he thought the shop space would be wasted as offices and his fiancée suggested a dessert bar.
At the time Bridgend did not have one and their experience lay elsewhere.
The closest they had come was serving pick and mix on a sweet stall in Bridgend Market, which Adam’s nan Marion had for seven years before it closed in January due to lack of trade in the market.
They spent eight weeks transforming the shop and, expecting business to be slow at first, opened up with just one blender to make milkshakes.
But they were quickly forced to buy more to keep up with demand and the counters on the machines now show they’ve made 16,000 milkshakes.
And, as one of their best sellers, the shakes also mean the shop goes through 60 tubs of vanilla ice cream on a normal day – although that can treble on a hot day.
They also expanded their menu following customer suggestions and now sell 225 portions of cookie dough every week.
“Before the last bank holiday weekend I bought 1,000 large cups and they were gone by the Monday,” said Adam.
The shop’s success has been such that other Nolton Street traders have reported a rise in footfall, even during the summer holidays when Bridgend College and the local schools are closed.
Adam said people have also offered to buy the business off him but he wants to keep it in the family. The town now boasts another dessert bar and major chain Kaspa’s is also due to open in Brackla Street.
Adam said it’s all evidence that the town, which has suffered years of declining footfall and store closures, is on the up.
“People might think I would be worried about Kaspa’s but it’s amazing that people want to invest here when they say Bridgend is not doing so well,” he said.
“We’ve even had customers travel here from Llantwit Major, which is nine miles away, and asking if we deliver to Neath, 21 miles away.”
Father-and-son team Andrew, left, and Adam Preddy opened Bridgend’s first dessert bar