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I want to franchise my business. Where do I start?
Alan Wilkinson writes:
We first need to look at what we refer to as five-star franchising.
Is your business established and profitable and does it have a good reputation, at least locally? You cannot franchise an idea for a concept, it must have been at least piloted.
Is your business easily learned by somebody with relevant skills? Is your product or service required in multiple locations around the UK or internationally or is it something that’s niche to your specific location?
Does your business generate sufficient profits and high enough profit margins to make money for both the franchisee and franchisor? Do you have or can you adapt to a culture of mutual support and trust when working with your franchisees?
Typically, start-up franchisors may not have all of these elements in place. The question is how we put them in place to structure a successful franchise concept.
The starting point is to produce a franchise business blueprint to structure the concept in terms of fees, training, support, territorial planning and franchisee recruitment.
Once this is in place, the systemisation and documentation phase can commence, including franchise operating manuals, legal agreements and recruitment processes.
This then leads to the only real reason anybody wants to franchise their business: the recruitment of a network of franchisees.
Alan Wilkinson is head of franchise development at The Franchising Centre and has been in franchising for over 25 years.
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