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Will a franchisor in the retail sector fit out my store for me?
What the franchisor will or will not do is set out in the franchise agreement, so you need to have a clear idea from the franchisor before you sign the document precisely what it is you will receive for the initial fee you’re paying.
Usually, franchisors require franchisees to undertake shopfitting themselves at their own cost, but in that case, almost certainly you will have to comply with the designs prepared by the franchisor because it would be unusual - and worrying - if the franchisor gave its franchisees a free hand to design their own premises.
In many cases, you will also have to make use of the franchisor’s nominated shopfitters. If you do, there should be a provision to require the franchisor to ensure those shopfitting services are provided as economically as possible.
If the franchisor is undertaking the shopfitting, the initial fee you pay will cover the costs of doing so. This means that, either way, you will be paying for the shopfit.
John Pratt is senior partner at specialist franchise firm Hamilton Pratt and has advised franchisors for over 25 years.
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