10 Step Franchise-Buying Process

    Providing Clarity and Direction to Your Search

    You are very valuable to us and we care what is important to you when searching for a franchise. Our goal is to learn who you are, what you want, when you want to begin and know how much you have to invest in a business.

    Once you clarify your vision, we will discuss who we are and how we can help you achieve your dream of business ownership. We have assisted hundreds of clients in this process and we are very confident that we can help you succeed in the most efficient and prudent manner.

    10 Step Franchise Buying Process - FranFinders

    1. The Initial Conversation

    2. Matching

    3. Presentation

    4. Conference Calls

    Once we schedule each call, we will provide the conference call instructions and facilitate the introductions. To get prepared before the call, we will provide an initial questionnaire that you can use as a guide for the calls.

    We also will forward a Grid Worksheet so that you can record important details that will help you stay organized throughout the process. These calls will help you clarify your direction and confirm if the company a “good fit” for you. We will discuss your thoughts after each call and then we will request a copy of the Franchise Disclosure Document from the Franchisor.

    We will have you sign the receipt once you receive the FDD. We will complete all the introductory calls with each company and then we will begin due diligence. Depending on the number of calls scheduled, this step takes approximately 1-2 weeks.

    5. Due Diligence

    Once you choose your “top picks,” we will review each individual Franchise Disclosure Document in great detail and use the International Franchise Association’s guidelines for document review. We use a shared screen and draft questions for the Franchisor to review our questions from the document review.

    If we are comparing various franchise companies in the same segment, we will use an FDD comparison worksheet to keep the process efficient. The time frame for one FDD review takes between 40-60 minutes.

    6. Validations

    We will have you conduct the interview process, also known as the Validation Process, once the franchisor addresses all your questions from the FDD review call satisfactorily. Before you begin your calls, we will provide a Validation Questionnaire and a blank Proforma so that you can use these tools as a guide for your calls.

    We are available to demonstrate how the calls should be conducted before you begin. We recommend that you contact at least 3 franchisees before you schedule a Discovery Day visit. Once you return, we recommend that you conduct at least 9 more calls. The time frame for each call takes approximately 30-40 minutes.

    7. Meet the Team

    Once you reviewed the Franchise Disclosure Document, conducted your interview calls, and completed the Proforma, you are now ready to meet the Franchisor and their staff. The Discovery Day process is designed to help you get to know the Franchisor and the team and view the operation in detail.

    Final questions regarding the total investment, a review of your Proforma and having all your final questions reviewed, will be the main focus of this meeting. We will request an agenda and confirm all travel arrangements before departure. Business casual is the dress attire and the Discovery Day process usually takes one day.

    8. Attorney Review

    We strongly encourage that you seek a franchise attorney’s advice before you sign the franchise agreement. The attorney will discuss the agreement in depth and you can review final questions with the franchisor before you sign.

    If the attorney recommends changes to the document, you will want to discuss these changes with the franchisor first and then the attorney will draft these items in an addendum to the agreement. The attorney fees typically range around $250 per hour. This process takes no longer than a week.

    9. Corporate Set-Up / Agreement Signing

    Once attorney review is complete and you feel comfortable with the Discovery Day visit, we will discuss the various entity setups that are available. We will have you contact your accountant and confirm what entity they advise. Then you will file your paperwork with the Secretary of State, obtain your Employee Identification Number with the IRS and open your business checking account.

    We will also introduce you to the Small Business Development Center, SBDC, in your area and confirm if you are eligible for a business mentor. We will coordinate a call with the Franchisor to go over where to sign, so the document execution is seamless.

    Then you will pay the fees associated with the franchise. The time frame for this process is about 1 week.

    10. Training / Grand Opening

    Once the agreement is signed and payment is made, we will request that the Franchisor send their manual and confirm the training dates with you. We will contact you before training and after to confirm how everything went with this process.

    Sometimes the franchisor will conduct the Grand Opening at your location or they will visit you after a few months from your initial training. The time frame with this process varies due to when the training is conducted.

    After we help you find a franchise, we promise to contact you quarterly during your first year in business. We are committed to your success and want to assist you if you have any additional questions while launching your business.

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