WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--United Franchise Group (UFG) (http://www.unitedfranchisegroup.com), developer of award-winning business-to-business brands and programs, hosted the largest annual World Expo in company history with 1,300 franchisees and 300 vendors March 5-9 at the Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, Fla.
This year's Expo also marked the franchising giant's first "green" Expo, beginning with the selection of a certified Florida Green Lodging facility and continuing with the use of technology to substitute for paper handouts; reusable and recyclable containers; elimination of disposable serving pieces and condiment packages; and use of natural and recycled products.
"While the franchising industry averages about 40 percent attendance at company trade shows, we had 80 percent attendance," said Ray Titus, CEO of UFG. "In fact, many of our owners chose to attend this show over their own industry shows because they get the benefit of company programs and still get to meet with all of the big vendors."
The Expo provided owners from SIGNARAMA, EmbroidMe, Billboard Connection, FranchiseMart and Plan Ahead Events brands the opportunity for mentoring and networking with the company's most seasoned owners and leading vendors like Georgia Printco, Sign Supply USA, Direct Sign Wholesale, Alpha Shirt Company, San Mar and Hartwell.
Also new to this year's convention was the first Women in Business seminar. The meeting included nearly 80 female UFG owners. Held as an open discussion, the program provided a forum for attendees to discuss everything from the benefits of woman-owned business certification to how to sell in a predominantly male industry.
"As UFG continues to grow to the $1 billion mark our challenge will be how to be big and small at the same time," says Titus. "The World Expo is a chance for executives and owners to discuss growth strategies while still cultivating relationships, providing two-way feedback and maintaining the personal connection of a small company."
UFG World Expo 2008, one of the industry's largest private tradeshows, showcased brands from five industries as well as three service companies. The five-day event included a two-day tradeshow, several days of educational and networking sessions as well as parties and outings.
UFG (http://www.unitedfranchisegroup.com) is a $500 million franchising expert with 30 years of experience and 1,400 franchise locations in 50 countries. Brands include SIGNARAMA, EmbroidMe and Billboard Connection, as well as two new brands -- FranchiseMart, a retail location to research business opportunities before investing; and Plan Ahead Events, a home-based corporate event planning company. Additionally, UFG's continuum of development services helps entrepreneurs grow their businesses domestically and/or globally with Accurate Franchising, Franchise Greenhouse and World Franchisors. Information is available at 800-286-8671 (U.S.) or 001 561-640-5570 (international).