Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Franchising For Young Franchisees

Franchising certainly provides those in mid life or with retirement assets an opportunity to experience entrepreneurship. However, franchising may also be a good experience for those in their twenties or thirties. Many college graduates in today's job market may find stiff competition to start a good career. Their lack of experience may make that task harder. Franchising could allow them the opportunity to gain valuable business experience and training for future business or career opportunities. Depending on the franchise, lack of experience doesn't necessarily preclude business success. Good franchises provide franchisees with ongoing training and support. In addition, the nature of franchising is that it generally offers the advantage that is lacking in a regular start-up business. A developed brand is proven and the success of the business opportunity can be explored through investigation of the franchise prior to actual investment. Early sales experience in high school or during college, while not lucrative, may be an additional edge for a young entrepreneur exploring franchising. Financing may be tricky, but there are low investment franchise opportunities and even young franchisees with good credit may not find this a major handicap.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Patient Advocacy Growing Arizona Business

Hiring help to get you through the hospital process is a growing trend that is emerging in Arizona and across the country according to this article. "As hospital care grows increasingly complex and medical errors kill some 100,000 Americans every year, a whole new industry is forming to deal with this disaster — offering hired help to get you through your hospital stay alive....Arizona — with the nation's longest ER wait time and an extreme shortage of doctors and nurses — should prove fertile for the fledgling business." Family and friends can perform the function of sherparding a patient through their treatment at a hospital particularly if they are familiar with the patient's medical history. "But the services of paid advocates are automatically exclusive — available only to those who can afford them. That troubles many in this new business, and sets the stage for scams and frauds targeting vulnerable, often elderly patients.
Patient Care Advocates charges an upfront fee of $1,895 for two years of patient advocate service, available whenever it's needed. They say that does not cover their actual expense of performing the service, which is supported by the other part of their business, home health-care services." However, some US corporations have added this service to their employee health care plans which appears to indicated continued demand.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Clothing Franchisee Describes Highs and Lows of Being a Franchisee

Megan Albers is the owner of Girl Boutique, an upscale clothing store that specializes in designer labels in Overland Park and believes her network of family and friends have helped make her store a success. According to this article, being a part of a franchise in which the owner helped her get in touch with needed vendors was also an asset. The franchisor "had established relationships with many of them, and they were all willing to help me in some form or another. It would have been hard getting some of the vendors I wanted because of pre-existing boutiques around me and simply not knowing how to even approach these vendors.” She also discusses the limitations of having a franchise and how she makes her individual mark. “Since we are required to have the same walls, floor, etc., it is somewhat hard to present that flair you want. The way that I put my own personality into the store was making my own custom desk, and adding furniture pieces. … I wanted the shop to have a feel of a little rustic boutique that was funky and fresh.”

Monday, April 14, 2008

Why Arizona Might Be A Good Place for Franchising

Kathleen Connell, PhD, a professor at Haas Business School at the University of California, Berkeley thinks that if you are burdened by taxes, city and state tax codes differ to such an extent that location should be something worth considering. According to this article, "The amount of variation is striking. Families earning the same income experience significant differences in the tax burdens they shoulder, depending on where they live." With respect to Arizona, she mentions that: "The bordering states of Arizona, California, and Nevada also create tax opportunities for residents who may choose to work in California, but reside in the lower tax states of Arizona or Nevada. Check out your state's competitive position at the website of the Tax Foundation (www.taxfoundation.org/taxdata/), a Washington-based nonprofit group." This may have little to do with the business tax consequences for the franchisor, but it may impact the decision franchisees make in determining the appeal of an Arizona or California Franchise that has individual tax appeal. "For relocating retirees, however, the tax profile of a community emerges as a primary consideration. Smart retirees seek communities with the lowest income, property, and sales taxes – levies that can add up to significant expenses on a retirement budget."

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Roy Rogers Food Restaurant Tries Franchising to Boost Sales

The Roy Rogers food chain has done as well as hoped in the past several years. According to this article, Jim Plamondon the co-director of the restaurant chain hopes to try franchising as a means of bringing back loyal customers. "If things go according to plan, recovery lies ahead. The company is operating a booth during the International Franchise Show today and tomorrow at the D.C. Convention Center, a sign that Roy Rogers is trying for a comeback."

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Blimpie, Cold Stone Creamery franchisor Has New President

Kahala Corp., an Arizona Franchise of food franchise concepts based in Scottsdale, Arizona announced a new president. According to this article, Chris Prasifka was announced as president of Kahala Franchise Corp., "franchisor for Kahala's portfolio of brands that include Blimpie and Cold Stone Creamery." Prasifka will help "spearhead efforts to reach a companywide goal of 10,000 operating units by 2010." Before joining Kahala, Prasifka "was senior vice president of franchise operations and strategic development at Compass Group's Canteen division."

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Arizona Franchise Launches Ugliest Bathroom Makeover Sweepstakes

Re-Bath is a privately owned company based in Tempe, Arizona with nearly 200 franchises operating throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. Re-Bath franchise owners help clients improve the value and beauty of their bathroom. The remodelling Arizona Franchise has recently paired with a home improvement radio show to present the Ugliest Bathroom Sweepstakes. According to this article, will join "the hosts of the #1 national home improvement radio talk show “On the House with The Carey Brothers and Rebecca Cole” to present the Ugliest Bathroom Makeover Sweepstakes. “On the House” has been hosted by The Carey Brothers for over 20 years, offering home improvement advice to listeners and call-ins alike."

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

International Franchise Association and SBTV Promote Franchising Industry

Small Business Television, the Internet’s first television network (SBTV) has joined the IFA-International Franchise Association to provide small businesses with the latest in franchising news. The two organizations appeared together at the IFA’s 48th Annual Convention in Orlando. According to this article, IFA president said: “Franchising is growing rapidly, not just in the United States, but around the world,” IFA Pres. and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This joint effort serves to educate prospective small-business owners who are investigating a possible franchise purchase and help those who operate franchise systems and establishments to stay abreast of the latest news affecting the industry.”

Five Star Painting Announces a New Arizona Franchise Opening

Utah-based Five Star Painting Inc has grown to 48 franchises in North America and is one of the fastest growing painting franchises in North America. According to this article, the Franchise System announced today that Sonny Tesch and Mike Scanlon have purchased a new Arizona franchise location in the Phoenix, Arizona market. "Five Star Painting is seeing phenomenal expansion from current and new franchisees in order to meet the growing demand of its clients across North America. Sonny Tesch and Mike Scanlon are an experienced team with strong professional ties to the area. Sonny has been in Phoenix for 9 years and has owned and operated a successful financial services business during that time."

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Franchising Your California or Arizona Business

Even in a rough economy franchise lawyers receive calls from small to mid size businesses that are doing well and are at the point where they really need to expand to continue or increase that success. There are even businesses, as strange as it may seem, that fold because the demand for their products or services exceeds their resources to meet that demand and they simply fall apart trying to meet that demand. We will revisit the topic of franchising from time to time on this blog.

Why Franchising is an Option for some Businesses:
  • Cost. Franchising is not cheap, but finding the equity or capital to expand a business without franchising can be more costly. Setting up a franchise system requires the input of professionals to meet legal requirements and properly plan the expansion of the business. Franchising allows some businesses to structure the expansion in a way that some of the costs of a regular business expansion are the responsibility of the franchisee. E.g. Lease or service contracts.
  • Management. If a business were to expand without franchising, it would be hard to do so without hiring additional staff to manage additional outlets. Good Franchisees essentially serve the same basic functions your ideal manager might serve in an expanded business. Because franchisees have a stake in your business, indeed, they own the unit that you sell them, with the training that you provide and the guidelines under which they operate, franchisees can spare a business the risk of finding managers who are not sufficiently motivated or finding good managers who may leave at any time they choose. It is not unusual to see franchise agreements that are 10 to 15 years.

California Franchise Does Well in Rough Economy

Jason Brown and Vikki Hardy Brown bought into the Edible Arrangements franchise in 2006. Edible Arrangements is a Connecticut-based chain. According to this article, despite the downturn in the economy, "Their gamble is now paying off as their fruit-arrangement business is no longer just paying for itself; it's starting to turn a profit." They now own a second franchise. Edible Arrangements "has grown from a handful of stores in the Northeast to nearly 800 in only 9 years of franchising thanks to its novelty -- specializing in high-end, handmade fruit baskets and arrangements -- and its healthy twist." Apparently, despite the current state of the economy, the Browns say that none of the Edible Arrangements Franchises have closed.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Bankruptcy Filings Expected to Increase as Economy Slides

Although changes in the Bankruptcy Code in October 2005 made filing for bankruptcy more complex and expensive, it's anticipated that individual bankruptcies will increase nationwide significantly as the economy continues it's downward turn. According to this article, "National statistics indicate the trend is well under way, with bankruptcy filings by individuals up 27 percent nationwide in the first quarter of 2008 compared to the year-ago period, according to new figures from the American Bankruptcy Institute, a research and education group.Individuals' bankruptcies nationwide rose 40 percent in the 2007 calendar year compared to 2006. The ABI, which bases its figures on data from the National Bankruptcy Research Center, said the increase is due to rising household debt and growing mortgage problems. "

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Internet Marketing Workshops for Small Businesses in Arizona

Front Page Public Relations is a marketing communications firm based in Gilbert, Arizona. According to this article, the firm will be holding "a new 10-week series of weekly Internet marketing workshops to teach small business owners how to generate more sales leads and significantly increase their monthly revenue using cost-effective Internet marketing programs and the power of the Internet. The classes are held in Gilbert, every Tuesday night and cost $25 to participate."

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Geeks On Call Franchising Audio Interview

Richard T. Cole, CEO of showcase company, Geeks On Call Holdings, Inc. will be presenting an audio interview describing the core strengths of Geeks On Call and the difference between Geeks on Call and Geek Squad. Geeks On Call provides on-site computer service and solutions to small business and residential customers. According to this article, Mr. Cole discusses how Geeks On Call began franchising in 2001 and the substantial growth the company has experienced since that period, both within the franchise model, as well as their corporate-owned territories in Phoenix, Tucson and Scottsdale, AZ. "We are aggressively pursuing a true national footprint for Geeks on Call" he stated.