Sheffield Hospitality Entrepreneur Takes the Reins of Local Signage Business

FASTSIGNS Sheffield’s new managing director, Martin Slater, has officially embarked on a new journey in the signage sector, taking over the well-established franchise with the aim of driving in new clients from the local area. 

FASTSIGNS Sheffield is part of FASTSIGNS UK’s growing franchise network, currently made up of 25 other centres throughout the country. 

The previous owners, Garth and Paul Allison, have successfully provided Yorkshire-based businesses with comprehensive signage solutions from its base on Old Station Drive since 1994. The takeover marks the retirement of Garth, while co-owner and son, Paul, will remain in the business as a consultant for the Sheffield and Chesterfield centres.

Prior to joining FASTSIGNS UK, Martin had built up three decades’ worth of experience working in various areas of Sheffield’s hospitality scene, including running the Abbeydale Sports Club, his own delicatessen, and managing a local McDonalds. 

Taking the principles laid out by his predecessor, Martin will seek to continue to build the business, focusing on the sales element of the centre with an aim to work alongside more business-to-business and consumer-focused customers in the surrounding area. 

Martin’s experience working under a franchise model comes from an early age working for his family’s ice cream business and a career managing another one of the UK’s biggest franchises, McDonalds, demonstrating his knowledge of what a franchise network has to offer. 

Talking about his latest venture, Martin, now managing director at FASTSIGNS Sheffield, said: 

“After living and working in Sheffield for the last three decades, I’m familiar with the local community, and many business owners within the city. 

“Transitioning to a completely new sector could’ve been a daunting experience, but the support of the team at FASTSIGNS Sheffield, and drawing on those transferable skills, such as customer service, delivering quality products and memorable experiences, have made the change seamless.

“Signage is not just about displaying a company’s name or logo. At the heart of it, it’s about communicating a brand’s identity, its values and messages to its customers effectively. My background in hospitality has instilled in me a deep understanding of the importance of visual communication and fostering connections, which I’m excited to bring to the fore at FASTSIGNS.”

John Davies, managing director of FASTSIGNS UK, added: 

“Martin’s transition from the hospitality industry to the dynamic signage sector marks a new bold chapter in his career journey. With roots firmly planted in the heart of Sheffield’s bustling community, we’re excited to see how this already-established branch will continue to flourish under his leadership.  

“Martin brings a wealth of knowledge of how a franchise network works and what we can offer in his journal. I am confident that he will be a valuable asset to our expanding team here in the UK.”

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