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Statement from Pip Wilkins, CEO, British Franchise Association: UK Franchise Exhibitions

After a busy start to the year including preparing for and attending franchise exhibitions some of our members are now reflecting on their experiences. The bfa is aware that there has been discussion about two franchise exhibitions taking place at the weekend, one accredited and supported by the bfa, the other not and would like to clarify the position of the Association on this matter.

The Association is also conscious that many members did not attend either exhibition last weekend and are still in the process of preparing for the imminent London event, The British and International Franchise Exhibition at London Olympia.

The bfa works in partnership with Venture Marketing Group (VMG) to ensure franchise exhibitions in the UK market represent ethical business format franchising. Upholding standards and promoting accredited businesses remains a core focus of the bfa‘s work and is very much at the heart of what the Association does. The purpose of this is to provide a solid foundation for network growth.

The UK’s franchising reputation has improved hugely whilst the Association has partnered with VMG, and the bfa continues to communicate positive messages to the wider public about exactly what a business format franchise is. One of the primary strategies for the bfa is to provide the prospective franchisee with a level of assurance when visiting exhibitions. This means they can be confident that the brands they approach are proven business format franchise concepts with a track record either in the UK or their country of origin.

The bfa continues to monitor feedback from the membership including opinions from members surrounding two exhibitions taking place on the same dates and the quality of brands exhibiting. The bfa is committed to ensuring that the industry does not step back in time to exhibitions where there are a combined representation of both business opportunities and unproven concepts. As a self regulated industry the association is committed to only supporting ethical forums for recruitment.

The bfa continues to welcome Members feedback and comments whilst striving to ensure the future of franchising in the UK remains strong. Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.

Pip Wilkins QFP

CEO

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