The theme for the 2013 FNB Franchise Leadership Summit

Franchising in South Africa has grown tremendously over the past few years. This is evident from the number of international franchises that have boarded our shores and created economic opportunities, job creation and infrastructure development.

On 23 October, FNB Business Banking together with Franchising Plus hosted the 2nd annual FNB Franchise Leadership Summit at the Hilton Hotel in Sandton. This 2 day leadership summit event played host to key franchisors and franchisees from South Africa.

Franchising plays a critical role in our economy and is one of the most powerful ways to stimulate entrepreneurship and job creation in South Africa.
Franchising in South Africa generated a turnover of R302-billion and employs more than 300 000 people. South Africa has 668 franchised systems, just over 30 000 franchise outlets and 17 franchise business sectors with the majority of operations being in Gauteng, Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal.

This year’s summit served as a platform for new and existing franchisees as well as franchisors to discuss and come up with innovative business solutions that will benefit the South African franchising industry. “Although innovation is a widely used concept, there are limitations when it comes to franchising. Franchises are compelled to follow specific policies and procedures. These franchise requirements specify exactly what can be sold, how products are made or delivered, and also exactly what outlets should look like,” says Morne Cronje, Head of Franchising, FNB Business Banking.
Cronje explains that, “Innovation” in franchising needs to achieve a positive return on investment that outweighs the risks involved with its implementation, must make discernible difference when compared with competition, improves the overall customer experience and make operations more efficient or lead to increased turnover for the business.”
However, in a franchise system, the right to suggest new ideas should be earned. This takes time and usually only comes once the franchisee has demonstrated that he is able to follow the systems already in place.
Franchisees must therefore be able to make compromises and accept that even if their idea is implemented, it may be changed substantially to conform to the franchisor’s strategy or business plan.

Innovation has become a buzz word in South Africa. “Whilst the franchise industry works on proven business models, we need to challenge ourselves to be innovative and create concepts that will benefit the economy and the South African business landscape,” concludes Cronje.

Key speakers at the Franchise Leadership Summit for 2013 included:

  • Doug Smart, MD: KFC SA
  • Brian Coppin – Co-founder, Fruit and Veg City
  • Ian Fuhr – CEO: The Sorbet Group
  • Carlo Gonzaga, CEO: Taste Holdings
  • Wilma Lombard-Maree, Development Director: McDonald’s SA
  • Louis van der Watt Group CEO: Atterbury Property Holdings