“In the past 12 years, we’ve focused on creating a fantastic community of innovative and motivated people who strive for perfection and reach new heights every single day,” says Anton Skarlatov, Co-Founder and CEO of Fantastic Services.
Before Fantastic Services was born, Anton managed a small cleaning company in London with no more than 25 employees. His most important customer was Lehman Brothers, and when they went bankrupt during the global financial crisis in 2008, he realized it was only the beginning of the end for his company. Anton had to shift directions quickly to stay afloat. He says, “This story helped me learn the lesson never to put all my eggs in one basket ever again.”
Anton recalls, “It all started when Rune Sovndahl was on the lookout for a cleaner, and then he met me while I was running my cleaning business.” The two were brought together by the simple notion of disrupting the property care sector by giving the greatest service to the end client and the cleaning personnel. They immediately realized that they had the same objective and that working together would enable them to provide far better cleaning services.
The opportunity was born out of adversity. Fantastic Services was founded in 2009, shortly after the global financial crisis of 2008, with only two employees, two computers, a sofa, and a shared mobile phone, and a budget of around £5,000 in the bank. Fast forward to the present, the company has grown to over 530 franchisees worldwide, serving over 50,000 clients on a monthly basis. With over 27,000 active club members who like to share their knowledge with new franchisees, it has developed a community of like-minded experts.
Both Rune and Anton are heavily active in all aspects of Fantastic Services’ operations. Rune, who has a background in digital marketing, is mostly involved in the technology and marketing aspects of the firm, so their abilities complement each other perfectly. Due to his service sector background, Anton is especially concerned with the company’s service development, franchising potential and worldwide expansion. Anton says, “My people-first perspective and Rune’s technology-driven approach have been why Fantastic Services is the first property management company with an online booking platform.”
Fantastic Services has built a reputation as a one-stop-shop for more than 100 services, including cleaning, gardening, tradesmen, builders, removals, waste removal, pest control, appliance repair, inventory, locksmithing, and more. Cleaning and gardening are among the most in-demand services. The list of services the company provides is growing and getting greater every day. Antiviral sanitization, minimum contact and disinfection services were established last year, and the company’s mobile vehicle services were just launched.
Fantastic Services has had a firm ideology in place since the beginning, which the team refers to whenever the going gets difficult. Anton says, “Our 360-degree happiness philosophy revolves around treating everyone the same, regardless of whether they are franchisees, employees, or customers.” He also points out, “The lack of hierarchy helps everyone focus on their own goals and stay on track with what they do best.”
The company’s in-house team of professionals is dedicated to constant improvement and customization of its services to meet the demands of its customers. According to Anton, given the ever-changing business environment, it is critical to adapt and evolve nowadays, especially after the coronavirus pandemic.
The Fantastic Services network thrives on a winning and collaborative culture. Since it is a customer-centric business, the organization is united by the purpose of serving and making its clients happy.
The Significance of Innovative Ideas in the Company
As per Anton, Fantastic Services has invested 20 million pounds in innovative ideas and technology, which shows how seriously the company takes innovation. He recalls, “When we first implemented our CRM into our everyday work routine, we were astonished by the amount of time and energy it saved everyone by automating simple processes, such as bookings and creating availability schedules.”
The management of Fantastic Services revolutionized the way reservations were made in the UK by bringing technology into their daily work. They were the first firm in the UK to implement online bookings. The company’s in-house staff of over 500 marketing, sales, finance, IT, and business development specialists are dedicated to enhancing the company’s business model, websites, and mobile applications on a continuous basis.
Bookings take seconds using the award-winning GoFantastic app, which is coupled with Fantastic Services’ custom-built CRM system, according to Anton. He goes on to say that the company’s franchise partners’ communication is easy and automated because of its other BFantastic app, which automates marketing, scheduling, invoicing, and other tasks.
The key is ‘Mutual Success’
“Patience and adaptability are qualities to adapt to if you want to succeed in business. Good businesses either solve a significant problem or make life considerably easier and happier, and great businesses do both,” says Anton. People desire, need, and are prepared to pay for these two “painkillers,” he argues.
According to Anton, the COVID-19 epidemic brought a whole new wave of “painkiller-necessities” to the forefront. During those trying times, the firm assisted its franchisees in turning crisis into opportunity by developing new anti-sanitization services and allowing everyone interested in running a home services business a chance to shape the future.
Former police officers, nurses, and attorneys, as well as teachers, retail executives, and marketing professionals have all been welcomed by Fantastic Services. They’re all striving for the same thing: to create their own future. Anton asserts, “If you have the drive and ambition, we’ll help you gain the knowledge and tools to become a top franchisee in your chosen field. After all, our franchisees’ success is our success.”
An Organization; A Family
“Regardless of how big we get, we will always care for the Fantastic Family. We are perfectly aware that family is not only about joy at the end of the day, but it also takes a lot of work and responsibility,” says Anton.
Anton is a dedicated family man, both at work and at home. Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with his family and friends, and while he is at work, he enjoys tending to his amazing team. He enjoys empowering others and bringing out the best in them. Skarlatov likes to empower people and bring the best out of them. He mentions, “I want to take care of people, regardless of whether they are at home or at work. I feel immense responsibility towards them. After the COVID-19 outbreak, those people were the drive-force of our quick adaptation—the protagonists in our success story.”
According to Anton, the Fantastic Services team has also turned its attention to reducing the company’s negative environmental effects by implementing a new sustainability strategy. Apart from cleaning people’s homes and businesses in a more environmentally responsible manner, the team’s business strategy promotes local communities. Anton says, “Everyone who wants to start a local business can invest in branded franchise systems and, through hard work and the support from our side, create equity in their business.” He sees that in this way, the company enables independently owned and operated businesses to deliver a consistent and sustainable brand promise to all of its customers. He asserts, “One part of our plan is bringing the 4P’s into our long-term strategy where the Planet, People, Profit, and Prosperity work hand in hand.”
Giving a View of True Success
“With our progressive mind set, it didn’t take long for Fantastic Services to establish itself as a leader in the property management industry in the UK,” says Anton. He says, “Our efforts were celebrated with so many awards that I cannot name them all off the top of my head. In 2020 alone, we won the AFA award for “Franchise Leader of the Year”, along with three other awards, which acknowledged our excellent support, marketing, and top-performing franchisee.”
The most important prize for Anton, though, is sharing success stories with its franchisees and witnessing the gratitude on the faces of the company’s clients. He believes that this is the most spectacular achievement and that no prize can truly reflect the dedication and joy that went into it.
Vision for the Future of Fantastic Services
Throughout the Fantastic Services network, the team has built a culture of success and collaboration. As a customer-centric business, the company is united in its mission to serve. Anton says, “Our 360-degree happiness philosophy revolves around the idea that each Fantastic family member is fulfilled—customers, franchisees, service technicians, and employees.” He further adds, “We achieve this through optimizing technology operations and allowing everyone to focus on what truly matters.”
Anton is continuously looking for ways to improve and feels there is always space for it. The firm has grown dramatically in the UK and globally in the last year, with over 30 area developers and master franchisees and counting. Within the next five years, it hopes to grow to 40 additional nations.
The team is actively working on a number of intriguing services and possibilities that will be accessible in the near future. The organization’s goal was to encourage consumers to think beyond the current global hot topic of the epidemic. As a result, it sets out on a quest to assist 1,000 people in establishing their own 7-figure business in the next ten years. The team states, “With several of our franchisees already hitting the milestone, our vision attracted lots of followers and helped advance the cause of franchising.”