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CenterOak Bests 97 Firms to Buy Wetzel's Pretzels

CenterOak Bests 97 Firms to Buy Wetzel's Pretzels

CenterOak Partners, a Dallas-based private equity firm, bought a majority stake in Wetzel's Pretzels this week, ending Levine Leichtman Capital's nine-year ownership in the brand. Co-founder Bill Phelps remains CEO.

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Roark Buys Majority Stake in Jimmy John's

Roark Buys Majority Stake in Jimmy John's

With a new majority stake, Jimmy John's is getting plenty of capital without jumping into an ugly stock market.

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Could Chipotle Begin Franchising?

Could Chipotle Begin Franchising?

Badly burned in recent years with three ugly stock market bets—Valeant (VRX), Herbalife (HLF) and JC Penney (JCP)—Pershing Square Capital’s Bill Ackman on Tuesday announced a $1.2 billion wager on the beleaguered Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) restaurant chain.

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There's More to Picking Up After Dogs Than a Fake App

There's More to Picking Up After Dogs Than a Fake App

Pet waste clean-up services have become a mature business category, which may be one of the reasons the media no longer treats us to all those sophomoric references of cringe-worthy (but fun) company names. But a fake app put the spotlight back on our dogs' toilet habits.

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Zika Virus Could Bite Employers, Too, Attorney Says

Zika Virus Could Bite Employers, Too, Attorney Says

Zika is in the news, the mosquito-borne illness that is linked to birth defects in children born to infected women, and so is this week’s missive from employment attorney Tom Spiggle of Spiggle Law Firm. “Employers are in a tough spot when dealing with the Zika virus and pregnant workers,” he writes.

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Why Happy Tax Won't Get Invite to H&R Block's Holiday Party

Why Happy Tax Won't Get Invite to H&R Block's Holiday Party

The CEO of Miami-based Happy Tax, Mario Costanz, threw down a load of chutzpah this week in an open letter to H&R Block’s board of directors that blasts current management at the behemoth tax preparation franchise. “What has happened at your company over the past decade is appalling,” wrote Costanz.

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Fantastic Sam’s Ties Up With The Bancorp to Fuel Growth

Fantastic Sam’s Ties Up With The Bancorp to Fuel Growth

Massachusetts-based Fantastic Sams is looking to accelerate its growth, and has been approved for a franchisee lending program created by The Bancorp through its primary financial institution, The Bancorp Bank.

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Value Meals on the Rise in QSR

Value Meals on the Rise in QSR

The infamous dollar menu has reached its dying days. As commodities and minimum wage steadily rise, it has become all but impossible for QSR establishments to offer substantial $1 or $2 options and still make a profit.

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Finalizing This Year’s Top 200+

Finalizing This Year’s Top 200+

Longtime readers of Franchise Times are no doubt familiar with our Top 200+, but for the uninitiated it’s an annual ranking of the largest U.S.-based franchises by worldwide sales. Nobody else does it and, from my behind-the-scenes perch, it’s incredible how much work goes into this project.

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Workout Anytime’s Milestone Reflects Booming Fitness Market

Workout Anytime’s Milestone Reflects Booming Fitness Market

As more and more Americans look to get active—a 2015 Gallup poll found that 55 percent of Americans exercise three or more days a week—the franchised workout and fitness sector is booming.

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A Primer in Master Franchising

A Primer in Master Franchising

Global Franchise Opportunities is using master franchising agreements to take its three brands throughout the world, while working to prevent the dilution that’s inherent in turning over an entire country to a third-party partner.

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Mixed Bizness: Today’s Assortment of Indicators

Mixed Bizness: Today’s Assortment of Indicators

In case you haven’t noticed, many are eyeing slowing growth in the restaurant sector and predicting a recession. There’s no questioning the concerning data, but I’d like to counter that with a grab bag of recent, largely positive macroeconomic indicators.

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What if Driverless Cars Are Just Around the Corner?

What if Driverless Cars Are Just Around the Corner?

We had just sent Tom Kaiser’s story about driverless cars to the printer when Ford Motor Co. came out with the boldest statement yet about how near that seemingly sci-fi day is. Said CEO Mark Fields: “We’ll be mass-producing self-driving cars within five years.”

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Cost of Bathroom Wars Is $20 Million for Target

Cost of Bathroom Wars Is $20 Million for Target

Ever wonder the cost for trying to appease multiple interest groups? For Target Corp., it’s $20 million, which it will spend this year to add private, family restrooms to the rest of its stores, executives said in a conference call yesterday.

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The Time Is Right to Sell Your Biz

The Time Is Right to Sell Your Biz

If you’re considering selling your business anytime in the next few years, a franchise business broker has this piece of advice: act now, because we’re at the top of the cycle of this continued but can’t-last-forever seller’s market.

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Time for the NextGen to Step Up

Time for the NextGen to Step Up

Having just interviewed a 22-year-old Erbert & Gerbert’s franchisee from Texas, who impressed the heck out of me, it’s a great time to shine a light on the IFA’s fantastic NextGen in Franchising Global Competition that is accepting applicants for the year.

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Warburg Pincus Boosts BlueGrace With Minority Investment

Warburg Pincus Boosts BlueGrace With Minority Investment

BlueGrace Logistics of Riverview, Florida, got a $255 million shot in the arm this week from private equity firm Warburg Pincus, which its founder says will provide “a major shot of adrenaline” to growth plans.

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Good Dog Day Numbers

Good Dog Day Numbers

It’s not just the humidity. As a business reporter, things tend to slow down during the dog days of summer. While the presidential election reaches its climax for boredom or excitement, a fresh round of economic indicators paint a rosy picture of our union as we enter the final weeks of summer.

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Legendary Eater Kobayashi Wins Chronic Taco Challenge

Legendary Eater Kobayashi Wins Chronic Taco Challenge

The taco-eating challenge at The Palms in Las Vegas this year was chronic, if not pretty. The legendary eater and reigning champ Takeru Kobayashi gobbled down137 chicken soft tacos in 10 minutes to claim the $5,000 cash prize and the flowered skull trophy of the 6th Annual Gringo Bandito Chronic Tacos Challenge.

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Zerorez Operator Sues Olympics Over Free Speech

Zerorez Operator Sues Olympics Over Free Speech

Michael Kaplan, owner of a Zerorez franchise in a Minneapolis suburb, simply wanted to congratulate the “11 amazing Minnesota athletes” competing in the Olympics in Rio, using social media to do so. But when his attorney warned him against it, citing aggressive actions against other small businesses by the U.S. Olympic committee to protect its trademarks, Kaplan decided to sue in federal court.

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Covers everything from good news to bad judgment

About This Blog

The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is associate editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
 
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is editor-in-chief of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
 
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is staff writer at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at
 twitter.com/mlarson1011.
 
Nancy WeingartnerNancy Weingartner can be reached at 612-767-3200 or at nancyw@franchisetimes.com.
Follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nanweingartner.
 

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