BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwire - Aug 18, 2011) - Financing and small business loans are once again top of mind for franchisors as the credit crunch continues to impact many industries. Some franchisors are struggling to put additional resources in place to assist franchisees with finding loans, as pointed in out in a recent Wall Street Journal article. However, for Baltimore-based franchisor Kiddie Academy, the processes they've had in place stood strong against the financial crisis.
While other franchisors may have struggled to find financing and keep locations opening, Kiddie Academy was able to slightly adjust their model to help secure loans at a more local level. Prior to the credit crunch, most businesses solicited loans from a handful of major national lenders. Once those lenders dried up, it was necessary to find banks at a more regional or local level -- an active approach that Kiddie Academy had adopted already.
According to Michael Miller, CEO and president of Kiddie Academy, their finance department has a team of people that not only thoroughly, and painstakingly, review a franchisee's pro-forma and business plans, they also facilitate conversations with regional and local banks, in addition to the national lenders.
"Despite the fact that lending has softened and lending requirements are stiffer, we have had processes in place that aggressively help franchisees reach out to regional and community lenders in an effort to secure funds. We haven't felt the impact of the credit crisis like other franchisors because we didn't need to re-create our franchisees' financing model," Miller said. "Our new location openings have continued to increase."
"As access to capital for small business operators has become more challenging over the past several years, many franchise systems, such as the Kiddie Academy, have done an excellent job with the execution of pre-qualifying their applicants for bank financing, making the appropriate introductions to those active lenders, and in becoming actively engaged with the monitoring of their applicants' entire funding process; from filing the formal loan application for approval through to the final loan disbursements," said Reginald Heard, president & CEO Bankers One Capital.
Franchisors, including Kiddie Academy, have also been assisting their franchisees in utilizing their 401ks as a means of investing in their franchise business, without being taxed or penalized.
"Our team of finance professionals can easily have conversations with over a dozen banks before finding the right lender. There is a real commitment to helping our franchisees; we are invested in them as well," Miller said.
The extra resources and efforts have certainly paid off. Kiddie Academy continues to see success in facilitating financing and has been designated as a preferred franchise concept by the national lender, CIT.
"Our team has done a great job in explaining what Kiddie Academy is all about and promoting our brand to lenders. In our opinion, we're seeing things get better in terms of financing and are looking forward to growth," Miller said.
For more information on Kiddie Academy and its franchising opportunities, please visit www.kiddieacademy.com or www.kiddieacademyfranchising.com.
For more than 30 years, Kiddie Academy® has been a leader in education-based child care. The company serves families and their children ages 6 weeks to 12 years old, offering full time care, before- and after-school care and summer camp programs. Kiddie Academy's proprietary Life Essentials® curriculum, supporting programs, methods, activities and techniques help prepare children for school and for life. Kiddie Academy is using the globally recognized AdvancED accreditation system, signifying its commitment to quality education and the highest standards in child care. Kiddie Academy is an official partner of the nonprofit organization, First Book, and is dedicated to supporting children's literacy. For more information, visit www.kiddieacademy.com.
Kiddie Academy Domestic Franchising is based in Maryland and has over 95academies located in 24 states, including two company-owned locations. Approximately 70 additional academies are in development, with 15 to 20 new locations slated to open each year. For more information, visit www.kiddieacademyfranchising.com.