The International Franchise Association claims that the Healthy Families Act could severely undermine the economic vitality of franchising. (Like the current economy hasn’t done that already.) The legislation would require companies with at least 15 employees to provide a minimum of seven days of paid sick leave per worker. The IFA estimates that the act would cost an average franchise business an additional $800 to $1,000 per employee per year. From a consumer perspective, we’d gladly pay an extra quarter for fast food that hasn’t been sneezed on.
Sweet deal. What’s the scoop with Haagen-Dazs? The ice-cream company plans to increase the number of U.S. stores by 10 percent this year. Haagen-Dazs now operates 250 in the U.S. and is focusing its franchising efforts in underdeveloped markets for the brand, including Northern California, Georgia, Maryland, Virginia and Hawaii. The company is also sweetening the deal by offering a $10,000 discount off the $30,000 franchise fee for existing food service operators with two years of franchise experience.
Wendy’s big problem. Wendy’s is very unhappy with Jacob Zachariah, a former franchisee who continues to operate his Ukiah, Calif. restaurant under the Wendy’s name. The company claims that Zachariah is serving unapproved and possibly tainted food, and that he’s an all-round unstable character. Wendy’s says it terminated its 23-year-old franchise agreement with Zachariah after he threw a laptop at a company representative and neglected to address 200 “deficiencies” at the restaurant. The restaurant is still open, so if you’re ever in Ukiah, Zachariah would love to serve you. Just remember to duck when he hurls the deep fryer your way.
Raw deal. Sometimes franchisors have trouble with their franchisees. And sometimes, it’s the other way around. Like when franchisees invest hundreds of thousands into their stores, only to watch in horror as the mothership implodes. That was the case with Cuppy’s Coffee, which has been stung by the alleged financial shenanigans of CEO Dale Nabors, reports Blue MauMau. Franchisees who lost everything finally got a chance to confront Nabors when he appeared in court on charges of passing worthless checks. “Where’s my money?” shouted Cuppy’s franchise owner Alicia Benefield, who claims to have lost $170,000. Sadly, wherever it went, we’re almost certain she’s never getting it back.