Member Spotlight

To celebrate Basking Babies’ 10-year anniversary, we caught up with Carla Davison, Owner & Founder of the national franchise business.

Tell us about Basking Babies, how did it begin?

Rewind to 2009. I had a great job in the city and I loved it.  The hours were long, the work was exciting, and socialising into the early hours was part of the job – but it was the type of environment where if you left on time, it was career suicide. I knew I wanted children and I knew that I wanted to be around for them. So, I made the move into work that had predictable and shorter hours each day. I felt chuffed that I had found enjoyable work with career progression that I could also fit around family life.

In 2012, my first baby was born. I went back to this ’ideal’ work and it hit me hard. Getting on the train at 7 am and not getting home until 6 pm did not work for me. I couldn’t help but think, even if I could make it work through my baby’s early years by using nurseries that are open long hours, how would it work when he reached school age?

How could having a successful career need to come at such a sacrifice to family life? How could there be so few jobs that made this balance possible? I couldn’t think of a single one that truly gave me the flexibility to be there for my children alongside having a successful and fulfilling career. So, it became my dream to make it a reality. Not only did I want this for myself, I wanted to help others with the same dream to achieve the same. I wanted to create work that makes a difference, work that you truly love but that does not come at a cost to family life.

Basking Babies was born.

Only a few weeks after the birth of my first son, I ran my first baby massage classes from my house in Brentwood. Demand for classes continuously grew and I started running from a venue, expanded into baby yoga, and then took on my first three franchisees in May 2014. In each subsequent year, I have developed the business and taken on more franchisees while also growing my own family at the same time.


What does Basking Babies offer to families?

Basking Babies provides a range of classes to support parents and make a real difference through their early parenting journey, from pregnancy to preschool. Classes include pregnancy relaxation, baby massage, baby yoga, and baby reflexology.


How many franchisees do you have?

We currently have 15 franchisees who love their work and are passionate about what they do. Each franchisee chooses their own hours so that they can truly have a business they love, which allows them to put their family first.


What are your top tips for children’s activity providers?

My biggest piece of advice is, never stop learning!

I have a philosophy of always doing your best at the time, but then continually reflect, evolve, and improve to make sure what you’re offering is the best it can be. That’s exactly how Basking Babies has grown from a class in my living room, reaching a handful of families, to reaching hundreds every week.

By becoming a member of ICAP you’re joining a community of like-minded professionals and business owners in the children’s activity sector working towards excellence

Pip Wilkins

Pip Wilkins is the Chief Executive of the British Franchise Association (bfa). With 25 years’ experience in the franchise sector, Pip has worked her way up within the Association, gaining insight from all areas of the business and the franchise industry. She is well-known and highly regarded in franchising for her dedication and depth of knowledge. Pip regularly speaks at conferences and seminars both domestically and internationally, as well as writing on franchising matters for national, local and franchising trade press. Pip is also a regular judge for the annual bfa HSBC Franchise Awards, the Franchise Marketing Awards and Global Franchise Awards. Pip represents the UK at both the European Franchise Federation (EFF) and World Franchise Council (WFC). The bfa has grown to be one of the largest franchise associations in Europe, and one of the most successful associations in the world.

Theo Millward

Theo Millward is a graduate of Lancaster University with a BBA in Management. In 2016 Theo purchased UK swim school, Swimtime from the founders which teaches 20,000 children a week. Following a multi-award- winning digital transformation, during the global pandemic, Theo and his team founded Franscape, a saas that digitally transforms Franchise brands. FranScape won New Business of the Year at the UK Business Awards.

Andy Georgiou

Andy is the Founder of ICAP and a leading UK Franchise Business Consultant. He is fiercely committed to helping children’s activity providers build successful and profitable businesses. With qualifications in Business Management, Digital Media and Marketing, he has helped build, advise and grow leading 6 and 7 fiqure children’s education, sports and activity brands in the past 17 years.

Frank Sahlein

Frank has been active in the Children’s Activity Center industry as an athlete, coach, business owner, consultant and business broker. He is a native of San Mateo, California and graduated from San Jose State University in California (USA).
Frank was a pioneer of the Children’s Learning Opportunity Center concept from 1976 – 2016 at the Wings Center in Boise, Idaho (USA) – a blend of Sports Instruction, Arts, Education, Entertainment and Outreach programs.
As a business management innovator, Frank has delivered over 1,000 presentations for a variety of Children’s Activity Center industries such as gymnastics, swimming, cheerleading, dance, martial arts/ninja and child care/education.
3rd Level Consulting is a Business Development and Service Provider Partner for private industry companies, associations, and organizations in the USA, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Mexico, and Panama.
Two-time recipient of the National Business Leader Award from USA Gymnastics, Frank is the author of “Building Your Business Potential” and “Designing Your Empowered Life”. He is the creator of the SmartEDGE™ Business Applications and Management Certification Courses. He is the co-founder of LEAP Learning and the MetaSpheres Corp, and is the founder and Executive Director of the International Association of Child Development Programs.
His passions include his beautiful wife Lourdes Gonzalez, family, friends, fitness training, transformational reading and travel.