The number of franchise opportunities is staggering, and they’re not all good ones. As a reporter constantly evaluating various franchises, here are a few bedrock principles for investigating and choosing your first franchise investment.
Under intense pressure from business owners, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges yesterday dumped proposals to require employers in the city to schedule workers weeks in advance and offer “predictability pay” when schedules were changed. She is pressing ahead with the other half of a set of controversial proposals, requiring sick pay.
The last time Franchise Times’ readers met Nicole DeSilvis was in the November/December 2012 issue, when the Franchise Times, IFA, U.S. Commercial Service trade mission visited Panama, Chile and Colombia, and she was the senior officer for the Colombia office.
With last week’s announcement that it’s removing artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners and preservatives from its menu—as well as introducing meats that have never been given antibiotics or hormones—Noodles & Company is going down a much-welcomed path to reviving its brand: honesty.
Minneapolis is newly in the sights of the International Franchise Association, which is blasting proposals by the city to require employers to pay sick time and to publish schedules 28 days in advance.
With only 142,000 jobs added during September according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, those of us in the franchise world can feel good knowing that 33,000 of those jobs came from franchising—23 percent!
Shares of Dunkin' Donuts fell more than 12 percent after the Canton, Massachusetts-based coffee chain announced the closure of 100 stores amid lower-than-projected EPS and a slowdown in same-store sales and customer traffic.
Robert Cresanti, the International Franchise Association’s top lobbyist, is now its new president and CEO and is expected to continue the trade association’s aggressive fight against what it calls attacks on the franchise business model. Cresanti replaces Steve Caldeira, who resigned after failing to reach terms on a new contract. Caldeira’s tenure began in 2010.
Most companies have an interesting backstory, but Ben’s Soft Pretzels has one that’s more charming than most. Ben Miller, an Amish baker in northern Indiana, ran a bakery stand at farmer’s markets across northern Indiana. After given opportunity to buy a neighboring flea marketer’s pretzel company, he leapt at the chance, but ended up having to invent his own recipe. And so, Ben’s Soft Pretzels was born.
For the first time since the Franchise Times Top 200+ list began in 1999, some of the very largest brands in franchising stumbled, as readers will learn when we publish the massive annual project October 1. But we couldn’t help but give you a sneak peak at the flip side as well—many smaller brands picked up the slack with some eye-popping statistics.
As Pope Francis wraps up his time Friday in Washington, D.C., and prepares to head to Philadelphia for the weekend, the folks at Philly Pretzel Factory are gearing up, too. They’ve created a special pretzel dubbed Papal Knots, and hope the pontiff will want a sample.
While in VW’s case it took a crack team of West Virginia scientists to uncover its years of deceit, while 500,000 of its sporty little diesels spewed excessive NOx into the air, many brands—especially foodservice—are one little discovery, disgruntled employee or news story away from public scorn.
There was “a little bit of star power” in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals earlier this month, in the form of plaintiffs' attorney Paul Clement, in the latest chapter of the IFA v. Seattle lawsuit over the mandated $15 minimum wage.
I’m fascinated by the hotel business, and find my interviews with hotel executives to be consistently interesting. With their fingers on the pulse of both business and leisure, those in the hotel world have a unique perch to analyze the economy. As part of our coverage for the Franchise Times 200, I interviewed heavy hitters from Hilton and Marriott.
No personality type makes a better interview than the crazy genius. See Elon Musk’s Late Show appearance with Stephen Colbert for a good, timely example. Some people just aren’t like the rest of us, and are able to use their unique smarts to leave the world a better place.
What takes five months to research, eight researchers and writers to report, and 500 franchise brands with up to 15 data points each to compile? The Franchise Times 200+, in preparation now to publish October 1.
Working in offices for 12 years, I’ve never understood what’s going on inside of those breakroom vending machines. Why are our employers feeding us Mountain Dew, Dr. Pepper, Reese's Pieces and Doritos? Seriously, if they’re trying to kill us, what’s with the paychecks?
Another bombshell came from the National Labor Relations Board yesterday, when it ruled Browning Ferris Industries qualifies as a “joint employer” alongside one of its subcontractors for the purpose of negotiations with unions.
Ten years ago, David Magri’s Smoothie King business was underwater—literally—as the levees in New Orleans broke after Hurricane Katrina passed through. This weekend, marking the 10th anniversary of the storm, he is relieved to say he and the city are back on their feet.
After joining Franchise Times in December, this year’s Restaurant Finance Development Conference will be my first look at our very impressive event designed to help national restaurateurs grow their businesses.
What's up with young people in foodservice and their beards? Turns out the question is on the minds of restaurant owners/operators these days, illuminating the latest generation gap between millennials and their elders.
Like Peak Oil (then again, gas sure is cheap), Peak Burrito means that society’s appetite for burritos is matching the current number of companies building new burrito-centric restaurants. These sour cream and guac-dipped good times cannot go on forever, can they?
Arooga’s signed a big development deal this week that—if completed—will double the size of its footprint, adding 50 restaurants over eight years in Florida and five counties in the greater Atlanta area.
A new STEM curriculum (science, technology, engineering and math) is a hit for Sylvan Learning, and attendees at its conference starting Sept. 1 will get a chance to ask questions about the latest offerings.
Creepy as he may look—seriously, that outfit—nobody's accusing Ronald McDonald of sexual indiscretion. Let the ugly Jared Fogle situation be a cautionary tale for brands to avoid putting their eggs in one basket and steer clear of making a singular, fallible person the face of the brand.
Plenty of restaurant operators gripe about young workers. Then there’s Tamra Kennedy, who owns nine Taco John’s restaurants in Minnesota and Iowa. She views her role as an employer as a calling, and shared her refreshing philosophy at the Faegre Baker Daniels Franchise Summit in Minneapolis last week.
If you think the world’s spinning faster these days, here’s the best proof we’ve seen, courtesy of Gerry O’Brion, founder of What Big Brands Know in Denver. At the Faegre Baker Daniels Franchise Summit, he showed two videos and asked the audience if they could spot any differences.
As a franchise reporter, many interesting story ideas cross my desk in a given day. A Croatian burger-and-fries concept claiming to have created healthier fries with plans to expand throughout the world is certainly a recent notable.
Calling all prospective franchisees: Misty Young, operator of the Squeeze In restaurant chain in California who is also executing a massive development agreement for Rita’s Italian Ice, wants you to get out of ‘la-la’ land and get serious about analyzing your business prospects.
The current wrangling over U.S. Small Business Administration loans may seem abstract, but the plight of Amanda Purser, an SBA loan closer for Yadkin Bank in Charlotte, North Carolina, shows the real toll.
There are plenty of well publicized threats to franchising, including rising minimum wages in several states and cities, but unique fundamentals have the United States poised to continue its role as the globe’s healthiest economy and the destination for international investment.
A bill designed to “bring about transparency” in the Small Business Administration loan process would require first-year revenue estimates in the documents franchisors must give franchisees, according to sponsor U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, (D-Minn.) It was one of two bills introduced yesterday, both of which were blasted by the International Franchise Association.