Franchising Expert Shares Tips On Expanding Business To The Provinces
A local franchising expert will offer advice to those seriously contemplating to extend a Metro Manila franchise business concept in the provinces.
Armando “Butz” O. Bartolome, the country’s franchising guru and president of GMB Franchise Developers (which has 45 years of cumulative experience in franchising), shares important guideposts before expanding to, or operating an autonomous franchise business unit in the province.
He said the runaway successes of various franchised products or services in the metropolis continue to inspire many aspiring entrepreneurs to seek a legitimate franchising business as the viable economic alternative to other forms of entrepreneurship.
Bartolome said among the main considerations in expanding the franchise to the provinces are:
- Understand and observe the culture of the local area you wish to venture into. Just because a franchise concept has succeeded in Metro Manila does not ensure that it will take off in any other locality. Determine if the business concept is new, and if there have been similar businesses (or competitors) operating in your desire locality. Failure to understand the values of the people residing or frequenting the place, their behavioral patterns and purchasing power, will most likely have a negative impact on your provincial franchise venture. Aside from the accessibility and visibility of the business location, knowledge about the market is crucial. Study the marketplace and try to look for one bold stroke that will produce substantial results, or which will bring in enough business. Prepare a feasibility study if the location will suit the kind of market that the particular franchise is best suited to. You can then determine how you can appeal to certain segments of the population, say, retirees or overseas Filipino workers who abound in a certain provincial area. Along with this, be sure to detail what businesses are nearby, the type of traffic (foot and automobile) that passes by the spot, rent arrangements, future development plans for the area, etc.
- It can be a good idea to turn to the franchiser for invaluable inputs on selecting a good location. In most cases, the franchisers experience and knowledge about the market being targeted will help identify the perfect spot for the venture.
- Be sure that you will be able to devote time for the provincial franchised outlet and business. This comes with knowing the nature of the business. Fro example, a food franchise will particularly require constant attention to detail and continual inventory control. Some franchisers require hands-on management. This means that the franchisee will be required to be in the branch for most of its operating hours, or at least three to four hours a day.
Franchisers seek franchisees who can turn out to be aggressive and enduring partners who can successfully transplant the business in certain localities.
Going the franchising route, more than business acumen, requires long-term commitment and a responsible, systematic approach – preferably learned from the experts.