All across the nation, veterans serve in various roles from managers to board members of franchise businesses. This year, Senator Bob Casey is hoping to step up the veteran efforts and help get more soldiers into business and working.
A new bipartisan coalition, lead by Sen. Casey and Republican Marco Rubio, is hoping to create a tax credit for veterans who purchase a franchise. “This policy will help our brave men and women in uniform as they make the transition from a soldier to a veteran who has to support their family,” said Sen. Casey.
Although the franchise industry has helped create thousands of jobs for veterans through programs like VetFran, those returning home are still met with a struggle when trying to find employment.
The new tax credit, Helping Veterans Own Franchises Act, if passed, will provide veteran franchise business owners with a tax credit that is equal to 25% of the franchise fee (up to $100,000).
Currently, the International Franchise Association estimates that 1 of every 7 franchised businesses is owned and operated by a US veteran. This is equal to more than 66,000 businesses that provide more than 800,000 jobs. Casey stresses the need for more and different ways to provide economic outlets for veterans that are returning home
BookKeeping Express, a U.S. bookkeeping services franchisor, has announced the opening of their first Ohio office in the Loveland area. The new location will help serve the Loveland area, in addition to those in the Northeast Cincinnati.
CouponAudit.com recently featured Franchise Gator in their top 100 entrepreneur blogs to follow in 2013. The Franchise Gator blog was named #24 out of 100 blogs featured, all in different industries. The infographic below lists all 100 blogs, their web address, Twitter followers, and Facebook fans.
The International Franchise has released March numbers for the Franchise Business Index. The new report shows an increase of .3 percent in March, with improvements in credit availability and labor market indicators. The .3 percent increase in March is the third consecutive month of increases in the economic health of the franchise industry.
“Demand for franchise growth remains strong and with lending to franchise businesses reaching its highest level since the recession, the industry remains a driver of growth and job creation despite the uncertain economic and public policy environment,” said IFA President and CEO, Steve Caldeira.
Increases in the Franchise Business Index came from slight increases in credit availability and an increase in the self-employment rate of the economy.
The Zoom Room®, a dog training franchisor, has recently announced plans to bring their eco-friendly franchise to the Chicago area and all across the United States. The company has signed a new franchise agreement to bring three new locations to the Windy City; they are currently looking into locations near Lakeview, South Loop, and Lincoln Park.
“We are thrilled to introduce Chicago dog lovers to the Zoom Room and give them a fun new outlet to take their pups,” said Raul Murguira, Chicago franchisee. “With the cold weather during the winter and lack of dog parks during the summer, we know that dogs and owners alike will enjoy our unique concept.”
The Chicago locations will be owned and operated by husband and wife team Raul and Patricia Murguira. The couple has agreed to open three new locations over the next three years. The Murguiras are excited to offer an alternative to crowded dog parks and cold winter days. The first location is expected to open in the last half of 2013.
The pet services industry is continually growing and American spent more than $50 billion on their pets in 2011. The growth rate for this industry is more than 7.9% according to the American Pet Products Association, ripe for franchise business owners.
Thinking about a printing franchise? Despite supposed trends to “go paperless” and shy away from direct paper marketing, the printing industry remains strong. Take PostNet, for starters, with over 700 locations worldwide and a reported 5% increase in same store sales this past year.
In a recent interview in PiWorld.com, Tom Marin of MarketCues.com interviewed Steve Greenbaum, PostNet’s CEO and founder discussing various topics including the internet’s impact on the franchising industry. Its an interesting read, and I strongly recommend checking it out, especially Greenbuam’s comments about how the industry has evolved in the age of the internet. “The fact is that offline marketing often drives search behaviors,” he says.
But what about all the talk that “printing is dying”? Greenbaum notes that the printing industry has worked hard to keep up. Printing costs have become cheaper with the advent of more digital technology, which Greenbaum notes is expected to grow from $36.7 billion to $56.7 billion by 2020. This alone has made it easier for small businesses to create professional looking collateral they couldn’t previously afford.
Printing has been a cornerstone of franchising for as long as the franchise model has been around, and while new challenges await that weren’t inherent 20 years ago, a printing franchise can clearly make for a terrific opportunity. Printing remains a $300 billion dollar industry.
There’s no question that Google is one of the largest and furthest reaching companies in today’s world. The company’s influence has shaped the way we use the web and continues to expand into mobile hardware, augmented reality fashion accessories like Google Glass, even self-driving cars. With Google’s prominence it’s no wonder why the FTC began looking into antitrust claims against the search giant. Ultimately, Google settled the investigation earlier this year with little action from the FTC. Competitors were not happy, however, insisting that Google’s monopoly is a real and serious threat.
Google is quite obviously the leader of the pack when it comes to search engines. Its share of the search engine market consistently falls between 60% and 70% of the total market, with competitors far behind. We found that, on average, it’s taken Bing (arguably Google’s next largest competitor) 825 days to match features similar to those Google offers. That’s approximately over two years to match what Google has already rolled out. This latest finding begs the question: Is Google a monopoly or just really good at innovation?
See the data for yourself in our infographic: Is Google Search a Monopoly?
Franchise Benchmark recently released their Industry Insight report for January and sitting at #1 is FranchiseGator.com. This ranking is in direct relation to an overhaul of the site in 2012, which included a complete redesign and more high-quality content.
“We’ve invested heavily in relevant content and attracting more qualified leads,” said Farrah Kennedy, General Manager at Franchise Gator.
With the new redesign, Franchise Gator visitors are staying 14% longer and with streamlined navigation, Gator made it easier to find resources and videos.
The Franchise Benchmark Industry Insight report evaluates 3 months of data from eMaximation franchise sales for the 400 fastest growing franchises in the market.
“We’ve seen more closes this year from Franchise Gator,” said Thomas Scott, lead generation specialist for Franchise Performance Group. “It doesn’t surprise us that they’re ranked number one because they’ve been more innovative in working with franchisors to give prospective franchisees relevant content.”
The International Franchise Expo has marked the one year anniversary of their Operation Enduring Opportunity, an initiative set to hire more than 75,00 military members and 5,000 wounded warriors by December 2014.
Since its inception, Operation Enduring Opportunity has helped 64,880 veterans, wounded warriors, and spouses start careers in the franchising industry (this includes 4,314 new franchise owners).
IFA President Stevie Caldeira recently appeared on FOX Business to talk about how the franchise industry has helped veterans who are looking for jobs after returning home. He also explained why veterans and franchising are such a great match.
“Veterans are used to systems and structures and if you look at what makes franchising successful, it requires the same skills,” said Caldeira. “Now we have the research to show that franchising is good for veterans and veterans are good for franchising.”
The IFA recently put out a moving video, From Honor to Owner, which premiered at Veteran Day events in Atlanta, Austin, San Antonio, and St. Paul. The video highlights veterans returning from the military, and what franchisors are doing to help with Operation Enduring Opportunity and the VetFran Initiative.
Instant Imprints, a promotional products and signs franchisor, recently announced the appointment of Victor DeSio as Director of Franchise Development for the western half of the United States. DeSio joins the Instant Imprints team with more than 20 years of experience in all parts of franchising. Some of his previous experience included reorganization at Jenny Craig and operations management at Mail Boxes Etc.
“This opportunity means the world to me,” DeSio starts. “It is imperative that we attract the right franchisees and area franchisees to support our expansion and, I am thrilled to be leading this charge.”
DeSio is part of an aggressive growth strategy for Instant Imprints. The company is calling for 500 new retail centers in the US and Canada in the next few years. “With our aggressive expansion plans underway, we need someone with Victor’s expertise to lead our franchise development efforts,” said Ralph Askar, President and CEO. “He has a track record of growing franchise systems and implementing processes that result in attracting high-quality franchisees.”
Instant Imprints is currently awarding single, area, and master license developer opportunities across the United States and Canada. (Find out more)