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Updated 23 Apr 2018

Franchising benefits and risks: What to look for

Starting your own business can be much like a bungee jump; you are excited and terrified at the same time! You know you want to do it, but there are inevitable risks. 

Cindy Glass, 16 July 2017  Share  0 comments  Print

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There is the potential thrill of achievement and success and there is the possibility that the rope will snap, sending you plunging to the ground. That’s probably what most entrepreneurs feel like when starting a business – with franchise support or not.

Buying into an established franchise, though, is becoming a popular way for budding businessmen and women to explore the world of business.  Franchising is exciting and the possibility of success can be very good, but there are risks that you need to be aware of as well.

The franchise ‘rope’ and safety systems

  • You will be buying into an established brand. The business concepts and products have already been tested in the marketplace and, in general, have proved to be popular and successful.
  • You do not necessarily need business experience. Teachers, for example, can be excellent candidates for franchises which involves education.
  • Training is mandatory. You will be given the necessary training in all aspects of the business.
  • You are not alone in your business. A good franchise will offer ongoing support and encouragement and great franchisors will celebrate your success with you!
  • Marketing and advertising a new business is always a challenge. Owning a good franchise will minimise this struggle as the marketing strategies have already been established and have been tried and tested. A great franchise will always strive to improve the marketing and advertising strategies of the brand.

Related: 4 Great facts about why tandem franchising is for you

But, the ‘rope’ can break

These are some of the risks you need to be aware of when buying a franchise:

  • There may be excessively rigid rules within the organisation which may leave you feeling more like an employee than a business owner.
  • Some franchises require royalty fees which are unreasonably high.
  • You may find that some business operations go against your core value systems. If you do not enjoy what you are expected to do, look elsewhere.
  • People never stagnate. Be mindful of franchises who offer products which are outdated or seem to be losing favour in the marketplace.

Owning your own business is exciting and frightening. Before buying into a franchise, take the time to conduct due diligence. Visit existing businesses within the organisation. Make sure it is a business you feel passionate about. Jump only when you are ready and know that when you jump, you are in for the ride of your life.

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About the author

Cindy Glass

Owner and co-founder of Step Up Education Centres, Cindy Glass is qualified teacher with over 20 years’ experience in helping children grow and develop into the best version of themselves. She started her career at Yellowwood Park Primary in sunny Durban and moved on to open her first after-school tuition centre in 2005. Today she is the co-founder of franchise, Step Up Education Centres, the only after school remediation tutoring service based on the CAPS System. Step Up Education Centres is less than a year old, but is already in 3 provinces around South Africa.

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