Multi-Unit Franchisee Magazine Issue IV, 2016 - Page 40

D OM I N A T O R S Reconnect accomplishments.” The announcement was made during the Franchise Action Network annual meeting in Washington, D.C. When we profiled him in 2011, Branca and his partners in the immediate family empire were operating 70 Dunkin’ locations and 5 Baskin-Robbins stores, while the extended family was operating a “mere” 700 units. Today, Branca and his team operate 85 Dunkin’ stores with two more scheduled to open before year-end. During the past 5 years, he’s become increasingly involved in advocating for and defending his family’s stores, the Dunkin’ brand, and the franchise business model from external threats. In that role, he has served as chair of the Dunkin’ Donuts Franchise Owners PAC, vice chair of the Coalition of Franchisee Associations (CFA), chair of the 2015 Multi-Unit Franchising Conference (MUFC), an active member of the IFA, and currently is the franchisee chair of the Dunkin’ Donuts Government Affairs Committee and an elected leader on the Dunkin’ Brand Advisory Council. Perhaps his biggest achievement during PERSONAL First job: Attorney. Formative influences/events: The Dunkin’ Donuts franchise owners that I represented as an attorney. I learned so much from their example that is critical to our success today. My father was a very successful serial entrepreneur who was astute enough that he was able to retire at an age only a few years older than I am now, and my father-in-law was a wildly successful founding franchisee in the Dunkin’ Donuts system. I am very fortunate to have them as guides on this journey. Key accomplishments: Participating in passage of California’s amended franchise law to protect and enhance franchise owner equity. We have started a new manufacturing business and become partners in various private equity vehicles, including NRD Partners, formed by my friend and current IFA Chair Aziz Hashim. I have also invested in businesses with other Multi-Unit Franchising Conference board members who have become my friends. We have expanded our real estate development company fairly substantially and added more than 20 Dunkin’ units since last being profiled here. Biggest current challenge: Franchisee chair of the Dunkin’ Donuts Government Affairs Committee. We routinely encounter important people who lack even a basic notion of the franchise business model, and some who know it but openly seek to destroy it. Next big goal: Establishing legislation nationally and locally to moderate the rapid escalation in labor costs and needless litigation. First turning point in your career: Becoming a partner in a law firm. Best business decision: Leaving a law partnership to become a Dunkin’ Donuts franchise owner. Hardest lesson learned: As an attorney, your inventory is naturally limited 38 to 24 hours in a day. Growth is extraordinarily difficult in that industry. I suppose this is why legal fees have skyrocketed for very good attorneys. Work week: It varies, but can involve long days followed by permit hearings on new projects, or spending time in the pool with the kids. I see a lot of airports some weeks. Exercise/workout: High-intensity interval training mixed with weight training. Best advice you ever got: Become a franchise owner. What’s your passion in business? Finding new, diversified, but synergistic avenues for our businesses to grow. Meeting new people with new ideas. How do you balance life and work? Having children is a natural balancing agent in our family, but we all tend to naturally outwork our competition. Guilty pleasure: Having a full gym right in my home. Favorite book: The next one. Favorite movie: “Good Will Hunting” right now. I recently re-watched it and enjoyed the Dunkin’ product placements (which were unpaid!). What do most people not know about you? I am a very early riser. Pet peeve: Government overreach by people with no experience or bad intentions for my family’s livelihood. What did you want to be when you grew up? I’m still growing up! Last vacation: São Miguel, Azores, Portugal. Person I’d most like to have lunch with: Our next U.S. president, whoever that turns out to be. He or she will be faced with enormous challenges. People in power need to understand franchising’s issues. The industry is too important to the country for them not to know more. MULTI-UNIT FRANCHISEE IS S UE IV, 2016 muf4_profile_branca(36,38,40,42).indd 38 10/6/16 5:06 PM