What’s New in Franchising?

Each year I attend several franchising conferences.  Normally these conferences are fairly predictable.  The conference I just returned from was different.  The energy and power was palatable.  Things are rapidly changing, evolving, in franchising.  Here are my three takeaways from the most recent conference.

  1. The velocity of franchise growth is exceptional.  Private equity companies are investing in franchisors, franchisees and even franchise development and operational support companies.   It seems that the PE companies have discovered the power of the franchise model.  After acquisition, these PE companies are investing capital into systems driving strength and competitiveness.
  2. The sophistication of franchisor operating systems continues to improve.  The power in franchising has always been in the systems.  A large, well developed system has significant structural advantages over the average mom and pop business.  Today, the comprehensive nature of franchise systems is better than even before.  Call centers, online management systems, automated scheduling and routing, web optimization, consumer facing apps, etc.  All of these are increasingly commonplace in today’s state-of-the-art franchisors.
  3. The number of quality, manager run business alternative is rapidly expanding.  In the past most franchises required that the owner be committed full time to the business.  Today there are an increasing number of high-quality, manager run, alternatives both in the retail and service sectors.  These are sophisticated franchise systems that allow the owner to retain their job while growing a number of franchise locations.

As 2018 starts, I would like to wish each of you the very best.  As you know, my franchise coaching business is 100% reputation based.  Everyone I work with comes to me based on reputation and/or direct referral.  If you know someone who is ready to consider a change in direction.  Someone who is interested in learning more about what it really means to be the owner, I would love to speak with them.  Let’s make 2018 a special year.