Interest in franchise opportunities continues to rise and franchising is more diverse than ever before

By Thomas Scott, CEO of Brand Journalists
The International Franchise Expo is the largest franchise trade show event for potential franchise buyers in the world. This year’s attendance was one of the largest on record, and the event has seen attendance climb in recent years.

More than 400 franchise companies attended, and although the show isn’t fully representative of the franchise industry, it can be a great place to gauge the health of the industry, see what franchising trends are evolving and get a feel for the size and scale of the franchise buying population. If you’re only just learning about the franchising industry and you’re wanting to see if you can get involved with little experience or capital, you could learn about a franchise with low startup costs and also attend this year’s event! At this year’s IFE, participating brands included those from all investment levels, a wide variety of industry segments and full and part–time owner participation requirements.

In the era of self–directed online research, franchise buyers are still interested in seeing what’s out there and meeting a person face–to–face.

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Franchise opportunities are on the rise, with more than 3,100 franchise concepts available in almost 300 industries. The International Franchise Association indicated, in its Franchise Business Economic Outlook for 2015 report, that the number of U.S. franchise establishments is projected to increase.

“With the rise in franchise opportunities, there’s an increase in financing to support the franchise concept, including through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA),” says Romona Davis, vice president of SBA commercial lending at Ridgestone Bank.


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