The Franchise Commitment: Scotiabank Guide to Choosing a Franchise

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1 Franchising & Sctiabank The Franchise Cmmitment: Sctiabank Guide t Chsing a Franchise At Sctiabank, we recgnize the imprtant cntributin that franchised businesses are making t ur ecnmy. As a result, we have negtiated banking and financing arrangements with sme f the mst established franchisrs, which are designed t meet the unique requirements f their franchisees. If, after ging thrugh this guide, yu cnclude that franchising will help yu meet yur business bjectives, then inquire abut ur franchise financing prgram. Frm basic depsit accunts, credit card services, and cmmercial lans t sphisticated electrnic cash management, Sctiabank has the banking services t help yu make it. Intrductin Yu are abut t make ne f the mst imprtant business decisins f yur life. Cmmitting yur mney t perating a franchise business is n small step. But yu ll put mre int it than just yur mney. Yu re ging t have t invest all yur hard wrk, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit t make it wrk. And it s imprtant t knw that each franchisr is different and has different expectatins f its franchisees. Each has its wn kind f supprt t ffer and in turn expects varying degrees f cnfrmity t its prcedures. T help yu decide which, if any, franchise system is right fr yu, we ve put tgether this verview f the franchise cncept, and a checklist f the crucial questins yu shuld ask the franchisr, existing franchisees and mst imprtantly, yurself. We dn t have all the answers. But by using ur questins, yu shuld be better able t decide what s right fr yu. Franchising Registered trademark f The Bank f Nva Sctia.

2 The Franchisr Yur New Business Partner Befre yu invest in a particular franchisr, yu shuld knw everything yu can abut them their past recrd, where they re at nw, and mre imprtantly, where they plan t be in the future. It s up t yu t decide the strengths and weaknesses f the franchisr. But keep in mind that when it cmes t arranging financing with a bank, experience favurs the franchisr that has been arund a lng time, is run by experienced management, demnstrates financial strength, has enjyed smth relatins with their franchisees and keeps in tuch with their market the franchisees custmers. The fllwing questins shuld help yu assess the franchisr s stability, financial strength, and their feel fr the market. Taken tgether, they amunt t a single questin: hw gd a business partner will this franchisr be? Or put anther way, am I getting value fr the mney I invest in the franchise fee? The answers will be different fr each franchisr, and what is right fr yu might nt be right fr anther franchisee. What is imprtant is that yu knw wh yu re ding business with, and why. Is the franchisr a private cmpany, a public cmpany r a subsidiary f anther cmpany? Are the franchisr s financial statements available? D the franchisr s financial statements shw histrically favurable trends? Des the financial viability f the franchisr appear assured fr years t cme? Has the franchise system, under current wnership, ever been placed int receivership r bankruptcy? Hw many years has the franchisr perated in this industry? Hw lng has the franchisr been franchising? Has the franchisr ever been fund guilty r liable in any litigatin with Franchisees? What business experience des current management have? In this business? In franchising? Des the franchisr manage ther franchise systems? Des the franchisr run pilt stres/units? Des the franchisr have crprate stres that may cmpete with its franchisees? Will ther franchise systems, perated by the same franchisr, be directly r indirectly cmpeting with the franchise I m interested in? What are the franchisr s plans fr expansin? Des the franchisr prvide the franchisee with any financial assistance t help purchase the unit?

3 The Franchise System A New Business Mdel Operating a franchise means becming a part f a system. If yu re a dyed-in-the-wl entrepreneur, a maverick, then yu culd well find franchising a little restricting. On the ther hand, if yu ve already wrked in a large rganizatin but are lking t be yur wn prfit centre, then franchising culd be what yu re lking fr. The system yu ll wrk under is laid ut in the frm f a franchise agreement. This is what yu sign, what yu are bund t perate by, and what yu ll have t live with as a franchisee. S make sure yu examine it carefully and be sure it suits yu. The services f a lawyer r ther cmpetent prfessinal advisr are highly recmmended. The franchisr charges an up-frnt franchise fee. Try t determine what yu re paying fr, t recncile with yurself that yu are receiving value fr yur fee. Remember that yu re buying a methd f ding business, and ne f the things yu shuld expect fr yur time and mney is that the franchisr will run their end f the business with excellence. While yu shuld als d yur wn investigatin, yu re depending t a great degree n the franchisr fr site selectin, frecasting sales prjectins, marketing and advertising supprt, training prgrams, and mre. The Franchise Agreement What t Expect Answering the fllwing questins can help yu assess whether yu re getting a gd deal and what yu can expect frm the franchisr. What are the duratin and renewal terms f the franchise agreement? Will further training r seminars are available after I begin peratins? What significant events can cause the terminatin f the franchise agreement? What system is in place t reslve disputes between franchisr and franchisee? Hw ften will I have t prvide the franchisr with financial infrmatin? Will it be relatively easy t prvide? Hw much will any additinal training cst me? What nging marketing supprt can I expect frm the system? Are there peridic strategy and marketing meetings held fr franchisees? Hw will my advertising cntributin be utilized? What are the limitatins f territrial prtectin, if any? Hw much are my ryalty payments? Hw frequently are ryalties paid? Des the agreement allw me t wn mre than ne utlet? D the franchisees benefit frm vlume discunts and favurable trade terms frm apprved suppliers? Will the franchisr prvide me with prjected sales and prfits fr the lcatin I accept? What are thse prjectins based n? Will the franchisr wn r head lease the lcatin? What innvatins have recently been intrduced t the franchise system? Will the franchise system reflect the terms f the franchise agreement? What des the training prgram cver? Will the franchisr help me recruit and train my staff?

4 Yur Prduct r Service Chsing With Care As a ptential franchisee yu shuld knw everything there is t knw abut the prduct r service the Franchise system delivers. Naturally, an exclusive prduct, r ne that is f superir quality r value is a gd business bet. But these aren t the nly criteria fr judging the cmpetitive strength f the prduct r service. There are gd prfits t be made r lst in prducts which are nt essentially different frm thers in the market except in hw they are marketed. One franchise can be much the same as anther, but if its marketing is superir, it can verpwer the cmpetitin. S when yu try t assess the cmpetitive strength f the prduct r service yu re interested in, keep yur fcus wide. Cnsider everything it takes t deliver that prduct r service t custmers. Then ask yurself hw well yur prspective franchisr des all f thse things. Hw lng has this prduct/service been n the market? What are the results f market tests, if any? What is the target market fr this prduct/service? Hw strng is the demand fr this prduct/service in my territry? Wuld I buy the prduct/service? Is the prduct/service easy t cpy? Is the prduct/service prperly packaged? Is the prduct/service a fad? A luxury item? A staple? Is it a seasnal prduct? If the prduct/service is seasnal, will my cash flw be sufficient t carry me thrugh the ff-peak seasn? Des the prduct/service fit my territry? Wh backs up the prduct/service warranties r guarantees? Is the prduct/service currently n the market? Is the prduct/service subject t legislative restrictins? Is this prduct/service cmpetitive?

5 Franchisees Building Yur Netwrk Peple wh are already perating franchises can help yu. Try t get t knw them, and prfit frm their experiences. Fr instance, existing franchisees are a gd surce f infrmatin abut the franchisr yu ll get t hear it frm the ther side. If the franchisr is nt respnsive t the individual r cllective needs f their franchisees yu may nt wish t get invlved. On the ther hand, if the franchisr receives nthing but glwing reprts frm their franchisees, yu ve prbably picked a winner. Try t get a feeling fr hw becming a franchisee affects yur life. It is a majr business cmmitment, but its als a persnal and family cmmitment t. Nw is the time t make sme decisins abut the time, effrt and mney yu ll put int a franchise. Are yu prepared t make the cmmitment? What was the ttal start-up cst? Were there any hidden r unexpected csts when purchasing the franchise? Have there ever been prblems with the delivery f equipment, fixtures r inventry? Hw lng des it take befre the business reaches the break-even pint? D the franchisees cmmunicate with each ther directly? Hw lng did it take ther franchisees peratins t generate sufficient funds t pay them a salary? Was the franchisr s training adequate? Have any franchisees had any serius disagreement with the franchisr? Are franchisees satisfied with the marketing and advertising supprt they receive? Are franchisees satisfied with the terms f the franchise agreement? Wuld franchisees recmmend this franchise system t anyne cnsidering it? Planning fr the Future f Yur Business We strngly recmmend that prspective franchisees prepare a business plan including financial plans, setting gals and frecasting bth financial grwth and the expansin f their business. T assist yu in writing yur business plan, we ve created the Sctia PlanWriter fr business, which is abslutely ne f the fastest ways t put yur ideas t paper. Dwnlad a free cpy f this sftware frm ur web site,

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