Finweek English Edition - - COVER STORY -

Franchising is ac­tive in around 17 busi­ness cat­e­gories in SA, com­pared to over 70 in the US. But what is in­ter­est­ing is the ever chang­ing land­scape of busi­ness cat­e­gories. Once dom­i­nated ex­clu­sively by fast food and restau­rants, there is now a range of sec­tors that have suc­cess­fully es­tab­lished them­selves in the mar­ket place. Ac­cord­ing to the FASA sur­vey, fast food and restau­rants con­sti­tute the high­est per­cent­age of the in­dus­try, with the re­tail sec­tor com­ing in at a close sec­ond. But the growth of other busi­ness cat­e­gories is en­cour­ag­ing.

Sec­tors such as busi­ness to busi­ness, build­ing, of­fice and home ser­vices, and au­to­mo­tive prod­ucts and ser­vices, have proved them­selves in­valu­able in the eco­nomic down­turn as con­sumers turn to the idea of re­pairs rather than buy­ing new. Child­care, ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing is an­other area that has proved re­silient and con­tin­ues to grow as peo­ple fo­cus on im­prov­ing their skills and pre­par­ing their chil­dren for the fu­ture.

Some of the new fran­chise trends emerg­ing are frozen yo­ghurt and ice cream fran­chises, pop-up In an ef­fort to af­ford more op­por­tuni

ties to en­trepreneurs in fran­chis- cul­ture food trucks, gourmet burg­ers and pub con­cepts. Cronje com­ments: “Franchising of­ten goes through stages where cer­tain con­sumer tastes and trends spark the growth of a new trend, which then leads to growth of fran­chises in that spe­cific cat­e­gory. A cur­rent ex­am­ple is the frozen yo­ghurt/ self-serve phe­nom­e­non. Other con­sumer trends to be aware of in­clude the need for value and con­ve­nience. Brands that meet th­ese needs do very well.”

But, while all fran­chise trends of­fer ex­cit­ing busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties and start off with a bang, sea­son­al­ity, vi­a­bil­ity,

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