Franchise Update Magazine Issue I, 2017 - Page 58

BY KERRY PIPES

Supplier Spotlight :

MAKING THE GRADE FranchiseGrade . com helps franchising “ Find the Best ”

From a strictly financial point of view , franchising

is an investment vehicle with an expectation of return . While prospective franchisees may like a particular brand , they are investing in it because they want — and expect — a solid financial dividend . Having access to comparative data on the financial performance of different brands would be invaluable in their decision-making process . This is the heart of the idea behind the creation of FranchiseGrade . com .
Jeff Lefler , a franchisee and an avid stock market investor for years , founded FranchiseGrade . com in 2013 and today is president and CEO . His background and personal observations of the franchise sector led him to identify a better way to evaluate and rate franchise investments . “ I saw that a large percentage of franchisees were investing into certain brands based solely on their preference for the brand ’ s products or services ,” he says . He thought a more analytical , data-based approach would produce better results for franchisees and franchisors alike .
This raises the bar for franchising as a whole , says Lefler , because it means that franchisees can find healthy investments suited to their needs and goals — increasing their chances of success , raising overall satisfaction within franchising itself , and decreasing litigation across the board .
Lefler says that while his company ’ s research and analysis is built to support franchisee decisions , that data and research can be used to provide support to franchise systems as well . The company ’ s franchisor clients have included Jimmy John ’ s , Brain Balance Achievement Centers , and Tropical Smoothie Cafe .
“ We have two target customers , both the prospective franchisee and the franchisor ,” says Lefler . “ We work with prospective franchisees by promoting healthy franchise systems and identifying investment opportunities in their investment range and geographic location . We work with franchisors to highlight their investment value and match them with our prospective franchisees .”
What They Do FranchiseGrade . com objectively grades franchise systems on behalf of franchise shoppers based on the performance of each franchise system . The company ’ s methodology includes benchmarking identical data points within FDDs , which enables franchisee candidates to make one-to-one comparisons between franchise systems and thus help them make better informed , more educated investment decisions .
Jeff Lefler
Wanted : Reliable Information The demand for reliable information about franchise brands is on the rise , especially among multi-unit operators , as well as entrepreneurial , tech-savvy Millennials considering franchising as an investment vehicle . And with the number of brands also on the rise , the choices can be overwhelming , especially for new entrants to franchising .
Lefler notes that in the past 6 years more than
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