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Franchising: An Introduction

Franchising in Australia is amongst the most dynamic and progressive business sectors in the economy. It is a recognised and reputable way of doing business in Australia.

Franchise systems are present in most Industry sectors, and the economic impact of franchising is substantial and growing. It is hard to think of take-away food without thinking of a product produced using a franchised format; difficult to purchase petrol except through a franchised petrol station; and impossible to imagine a shopping centre without franchised stores. Franchising has revolutionised retailing in Australia, and provided small business proprietors with the competitive resources to compete against the large corporations that dominate Australian retailing.

Franchising in Australia may have initially provided a means for Australians to benefit from foreign products and systems, but it now is the chosen format for many Australian entrepreneurs to expand and develop their business. The great majority of franchise systems operating in Australia are home grown, and increasing numbers of Australian franchise systems are successfully taking their systems overseas.

Franchising in Australia commenced in a significant way in the early 1970's under the influence of the franchised US fast food systems - KFC, Pizza Hut, McDonalds - which commenced operations here at the time. The growth of franchising since that time has been remarkable. Over the last two decades franchising in Australia in its contemporary "business format" mode has developed into a highly significant and dynamic business activity which has expanded to include virtually every product and service business. As in North America the tremendous growth and popularity of business format franchising has transformed franchising from a specialised marketing technique into a highly competitive, innovative vehicle for expansion of retail product and service industries.

Growth of Franchising in Australia

Statistical surveys have been conducted for the Franchise Council of Australia every second year since 1998.

Click here to view the surveys.

Franchising Australia 2014 reveals:

  • There are approximately 1160 business format franchisors in Australia in 2014, compared with 1180 in 2012. 
  • There are an estimated 79 000 units operating in business format franchises, reflecting an increase of 8.2 percent since 2012.
  • More than 460 000 people are employed directly in franchising.
  • Sales turnover of the entire franchising sector was estimated at $144 billion.
  • Fully 86 percent of franchise systems originated in Australia.
  • Some 30 percent of franchisors have entered international markets.
  • Only 1.5 percent of franchisees were involved in a substantial dispute with a franchisor over the past twelve months.
  • Fully 45 percent of franchise systems engage in online sales with customers.

Latest News

MEDIA RELEASE The Franchise Council of Australia (FCA) recognised franchising's best in South Australia at the 2016 SA Excellence i...
  WA Excellence in Franchising Awards showcase outstanding franchising success.   The Franchise Council of Australia (FCA)...
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