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FASA Awards for Excellence in Franchising 2006

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FASA Awards for Excellence in Franchising 2006

FASA Awards for Excellence in Franchising 2006

FASA Awards for Excellence in Franchising 2006

12 October was a red letter day for FASA, and South Africa’s franchise fraternity at large. As evening approached, over 500 people put on their finery and headed for the Sandton Conference Centre to meet old friends, make new ones and celebrate excellence in franchising. The room was decked out in Retro Cuban style, with lots of red decorations and candlelight and looked absolutely beautiful.
The event had been preceded by regional finals held in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Durban and the Gauteng/Northern Province region and the winners of these regional heats were present as guests of the sponsors. Deep down, however, everyone knew that it would be the outcome of this evening that really matters and the excitement was palpable.

Opening address

First item on the agenda was a speech by FASA’s hardworking chairman Brenda Macqueen. After extending a warm welcome to those present, a visibly proud Brenda announced that FASA was going from strength to strength, with membership approaching the 200-mark. After thanking everyone who had worked so hard to take FASA where it is today, Brenda provided a few highlights of the past year, encouraged members to keep supporting the IFE and gave an update on the Consumer Protection Bill which is currently a ‘work in progress’ but could impact strongly on franchising.

Awards presentation

Under the guidance of television personality Leanne Manas who handled the role of Master of Ceremonies with aplomb, the event progressed to the awards and these were the results:

Developer of Emerging Entrepreneurs – Hot Dog Cafe
This category evaluated franchises that have been pro-active in assisting with the development of emerging entrepreneurs and will need to supply details on recruitment, finance, training, outsourcing and procurement.

Brand Builder of the Year – King Pie
This category evaluated entrants on their efforts to build their brand in the current financial year and entry requirements included the franchisor’s brand objectives, their understanding of the market, brand tools and brand building outcomes.

Newcomer Franchisor – Vodacom 4 U
The entrants for this category must have been members of FASA for 3 years and need to supply background details, financials, management details, franchisee and start up support, communication, training and learnership initiatives, labour relations, BEE, procurement, equity, staff selection and community work.

Franchisee of the Year – Jannie Lombard, Woolworths, Tzaneen
This year we standardized the category to include entrants from Gauteng in the line up which includes the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Kwa Zulu Natal. Regional awards were held and the winners of each region went forward to compete in the national Franchisee of the Year category. The entry form required a motivation from the franchisor, one from the franchisee, details on franchisee responsibility, training, learnership incentives, performance, labour relations, BEE, procurement, equity, staff selection and community awards.

We encourage all franchisors to nominate their top franchisee (or the winner of their own Franchisee of the Year award) and to encourage their franchisees to attend the regional awards which this year have been sponsored by First National Bank. The awards events, which are free to FASA members, give franchisors and franchisees an opportunity to meet each other and network in their respective regions.

Franchisor of the Year – King Pie
Entrants were required to give details on their background their financial management, franchise support, their communications and marketing strategy, training programmes, their franchisee BEE initiatives, start up incentives and expansion plans.

The finalists were rewarded with warm applause, the winners greeted with exuberant cheers, predictably emanating from their ‘home tables’. After the excitement had died down, we thought that it was time to reflect and this is what came to mind.

Industry sector representation

It has often been said that food operations no longer dominate the franchise sector, and with good reason. This notwithstanding, food won three out of the five awards, with the other two going to retail operations. Interesting trend but we predict that in years to come, service operations will make strong inroads.

Sustainable BEE initiatives

Entries for the award: Franchisor ‘ Leading Developer of Emerging Entrepreneurs ‘ showed that FASA members see BEE as a business imperative. Key performance indicators for winner Hot Dog Cafe make interesting reading:

  • 81% black franchisees, 74% of which are women.
  • Over 60% of franchisees enjoyed little formal education
  • The financial contribution made by 40 of these franchisees ranged from 0% to 10% of the total.
    • Access to loan facilities was made possible by the franchisor standing surety
    • Loans were granted at preferential interest rates
    • Several of these franchisees are ahead of their agreed repayment schedules and to date, not one of them has defaulted.

Rapid growth is possible

The first King Pie outlet started trading a mere 13 years ago, yet the company managed to establish over 300 outlets. Pies were traditionally seen as a rather staid product that cannot be developed. King Pie proved otherwise. They turned their offering into a contemporary quick service restaurant and backed this up with a series of imaginative marketing campaigns. This won them several local and international awards and raised their profile tremendously. It also proves that if the approach is right, just about any product can be franchised successfully.

Franchising Plus, a partner in Whichfranchise.co.za, is proud to be the provider of training services to King Pie.

Summing up

Five awards were under contention and in each category there could only be one winner. But, as someone aptly remarked, each entrant, and especially each finalist, is a winner in his or her own right. Companies and individuals aside, it would be fair to say that overall, franchising has emerged as the winner. The event proved that franchising is alive and well, and quite capable of empowering ordinary South Africans drawn from all walks of life to achieve extraordinary things.

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