April 10, 2012 // Franchising.com // LOUISVILLE, KY. — FranNet, a North American network of more than 100 franchise consultants, placed 33 percent more clients into franchise ownership in the first three months of this year than in the same period in 2011 — a clear signal that the franchise industry is poised for a banner year.
“Our first-quarter data are wonderful news for FranNet and for the franchise industry as a whole,” said Jania Bailey, FranNet’s president and COO. “Franchising outperformed other sectors of the economy during the recession, and some of our efforts at outreach and education are beginning to pay off as the economy improves.”
Industry experts predicted a good year for franchising. The International Franchise Association’s 2012 Franchise Business Economic Outlook, released in December, projected 14,000 new establishments and 168,000 new jobs for the franchise industry in 2012, coupled with 5 percent increases in economic output and GDP growth originating in the franchise sector.
The IFA recently announced that its Franchise Business Index, a leading barometer of the sector’s health, showed its sixth consecutive monthly increase and a level 1.4 percent higher than at the same time in 2011.
“Our first-quarter performance makes me wonder if the IFA’s projections, which I know struck some people as over-optimistic when they came out, weren’t too conservative,” Bailey said. “I know we have a long way to go, but the early returns on our end are extremely encouraging.”
In recent years, FranNet has aggressively reached out to business organizations and other referral partners for good franchisee candidates; among the more successful recent partnerships have been referral-based alliances with the small business counseling nonprofit SCORE and the business networking organization BNI.
FranNet has bolstered those efforts with ongoing educational seminars and webinars conducted by the home office in Louisville and by individual FranNet consultants; and pursued other worthy franchisee prospects, such as veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and former professional athletes.
“Our group has really embraced those initiatives, so our coverage has been more thorough, and we continue to get more and more people involved,” Bailey said. “I liken it to a net in that the more fibers you add to it, the bigger the net becomes and the better chance we have to reach the people who need our services.”
FranNet, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is a private franchised business consulting company that for 25 years has helped professionals open their own franchise businesses. FranNet consultants work individually with clients and use a specific profiling and consultative process to determine a business model unique to each person. Its services are free. For more information, visit www.frannet.com.
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