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200 brands sign up to voluntary franchise registry in bid to improve sector's reputation

Written on the 13 June 2014

By Michael Walsh

A voluntary registry for Australian franchises launched by industry information consultancy FRANdata will aim to strengthen the credibility of the $131 billion sector.

Around 200 brands are already listed on The Franchise Registry, which requires franchised brands to lodge a current Disclosure Statement and Franchise Agreement in order to be listed.

Franchisors will also need to pay a $365 administration fee to get involved.

There are approximately 1100 franchise systems in Australia, amounting to around 70,000 franchised businesses.

Michael Paul, chairman of the Franchise Council of Australia, says the registry will improve public perceptions of the franchise industry in Australia, which he says have been affected by recent disputes.

“It’s unfortunate that allegations of inappropriate franchisor behaviour from a small but vocal minority have the potential to impact the reputation of the wider franchising sector when Australia is the envy of global franchising,” Paul said at the launch yesterday.

Darryn McAuliffe, CEO of FRANdata Australia, told SmartCompany the information collected by the registry could contribute to improving government policy around the sector.

“The franchise registry is a significant step in self-regulation and will provide enhanced and meaningful data to support the work they do in developing, protecting and representing the sector,” says McAuliffe.

“[The registry] defines who the genuine brands are, as [a registrant] has to confirm that they are a genuine brand acting under the franchising codes of conduct,” he says. “They have to confirm they meet the guidelines and they have to evidence to us that they have current documents.”

FRANdata may aggregate information from the registry to create industry reports, in order to improve what McAuliffe sees as a “debilitating information gap” that makes it more difficult for franchisees to access finance from banks.

While the registry only has around 200 brands on board so far, McAuliffe expects that number to double in the next few months, with a goal of around 600 for the year.

“Leading franchise brands will want to be a part of enhancing the credibility of their sector, and they’ll recognise benefits involved in generating more data on the industry,” he says.

Read on source website.

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