The top 8 stories that you probably didn’t need to know in franchising this week.
1. Frantastic: We’re kicking off “The 8” this week with some Frantastic news. On Monday, Amazon closed its purchase of Whole Foods for $13.7 billion. And even though the deal just became final, customers are already seeing a change. Amazon slashed prices on meat and produce, and is offering Prime members special savings and in-store benefits through updates to point of sale systems. The deal creates the fifth largest U.S. grocery retailer, and opens up the door to the possibility of new shopping technology, including changes to ordering, deliveries and pickups.
2. Franlebrity: This week’s Franlebrity is another franchise attorney featured in 1851’s Franchise Legal Player Awards issue—Mike Drumm. In his Q&A, he explains the unique way in which he broke into the industry. It all started when he lived a block away from Massage Heights back when the brand only had one location. After he went in for a massage, he talked to the manager, who mentioned that they were going to franchise and asked if he could help. Drumm said yes—even though he wasn’t familiar with franchise law—and launched what’s now a successful career in the industry.
3. Frash Money: At the end of the day, franchisees get into business to make Frash Money. That’s why it’s essential for concepts and leadership teams to make franchisee profitability a focal point of their operations. Penn Station—which recently launched on 1851—does just that. In a recently published Q&A, president Craig Dunaway explains that a key part of the brand’s system is providing franchisees with the tools they need to monitor and track both costs and profits.
4. Frant of the Week: No Limit Agency CEO Nick Powills is back with another Frant this week that we’re betting most people can relate to—problems with GrubHub. His latest column details his recent experience with the site, which involved his food being delivered hours after its delivery time and turbulent conversations with GrubHub’s customer service representatives. But the moral of this story isn’t about GrubHub’s customer service. Rather, it’s a warning to brands that outsource to a third-party delivery service. If a customer has a bad experience, it has the potential to hurt a restaurant’s sales down the line—even if the problem wasn’t its fault.
5. Franch Forward: Sylvan Learning is looking to Franch Forward in Pennsylvania. In fact, the brand has plans to open up 15 locations across the state in key markets like Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Altoona, State College and Scranton, ultimately bringing more than 150 jobs to the area. Sylvan has already proven that its model works in Pennsylvania with existing franchisees successfully operating there. Between that established reputation and climbing demand for education services across the state, Sylvan is confident it will continue to experience growth.
6. Fran Funny: The first four days after a long weekend are always the hardest.
7. Franspiration: “I hate lawyers as much as the next guy. But as a franchise lawyer, I get to spend my day working hand in hand with top people in a given industry.” – Fredric Cohen of Cheng Cohen LLC
8. Franemies vs. Frands: If you’ve been fired recently, there’s an unsuspecting Frand out there that’s looking to help you out: Burger King. The brand is hoping to make it a little easier for those who were recently let go by rolling out its “Whopper Severance” promotion. The first 2,500 customers who post “I got fired. I want a free Whopper. #WhopperSeverance” to their LinkedIn page before the end of the week will receive a Whopper Severance letter and a Burger King gift card.