Industry Research

Business format franchising is the granting of a licence by one person (the franchisor) to another (the franchisee), which entitles the franchisee to trade as their own businesses under the brand of the franchisor, following a proven business model.

The franchisee also receives a package, comprising all the elements necessary to establish a previously untrained person in the business and to run it with continual assistance on a predetermined basis – including a predetermined agreement length, with renewal options.

Opportunities in franchising are varied. From home-based operations to taking a van on the road or premises-based, there are roles in franchising that can cater for all working preferences. 

Furthermore, the type of company varies considerably: you can work in pet care, retail, language classes for children, gyms and fitness, driver recruitment, coffee shops, in-home care and more.

To see a comprehensive list of franchise systems, refer to the bfa’s list of accredited members.

2018 bfa NatWest Franchise Survey

The 2018 bfa NatWest Franchise Survey has shown that the franchising industry is growing more than ever before. The industry now contributes £17.2 billion per annum to UK GDP, employing 710,000 people, with 93% of franchisees claiming profitability and less than 1% of franchisors closing per year due to commercial failure. 

More franchise systems

There are now 48,600 franchise units in the United Kingdom, a rise of 10% from 2015. There are also 935 business format franchise systems, around double of what there were 20 years ago.

Millennial drive in franchising 

There are more younger people than ever taking up a career in franchising as a franchisee. This is in part second generation franchisees seeing the benefits of keeping the business, and more people choosing business ownership with the backing of a network as they look to determine their own future. Currently, 18% of all franchisees are under the age of 30 as per the findings of the 2018 bfa NatWest Franchise Survey, a significant rise from the previous survey in 2015.

Multi-unit ownership on the rise 

Franchisees are increasingly choosing to own more than one franchise unit, sometimes with the same brand and other times with separate franchise systems. 36% of franchisees now run multiple units, a rise of 7% from the previous franchise survey. People are seeing value in staying in the franchising industry and expanding, and with more younger franchisees taking ownership of franchise units, this also opens up opportunities for the next generation to stay in the industry longer and build up their portfolio.

More women in franchising 

Franchising is ahead of the wider business world when it comes to women owning and running their own business. 30% of all franchisees are women, and as per the findings of the 2018 bfa NatWest

Infographic of Franchise Survey stats

Request a copy of the bfa Natwest Survey 2018

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