Dunkin’ Donuts new slogan is You Kin’ Do It. Except if you’re franchisee Walid Elkhatib from Chicago. Elkhatib, a devout Muslim, was recently kicked out of the Dunkin’ family after nearly 20 years of service for refusing to sell breakfast sandwiches with bacon, ham, or sausage. His faith forbids him from eating or touching pork. But Elkhatib didn’t go easily. He continued to operate his store even though his franchise agreement expired in 2008 and Dunkin’ Donuts refused to renew it. He even tried to sue the company for religious discrimination, but lost. Sorry, Walid. When it comes to disobeying the powerful corporate parent, You Kant’ Do It.
Instant franchise. Church’s Chicken is bringing new meaning to the term “fast food” franchise. The company has just unveiled a line of pre-fabricated restaurants that can be assembled on the spot in less than three days. The company says its new modular restaurant concept will cut the overall cost of owning and operating a new store by up to 30 percent. And because the buildings are fully manufactured offsite, franchisees can eliminate risks associated with hiring a general contractor and managing the construction process, says the company. Can’t find a Church’s near you? Just add water, wait three days, and presto.
Fools gold? Midas Inc., the muffler and auto repair franchise, has enjoyed an enviable business turnaround in recent years. But franchisees in Canada say the company’s overall success has come at their expense. In 2003, Midas stopped distributing parts to Canadian franchisees at discounted prices. The franchisees say this decision caused them significant financial losses. They are seeking damages and an improved royalty structure going forward. The Ontario Superior Court recently ruled that a class-action suit against Midas Canada is allowed to proceed. So much for the Midas touch.
Going green without the green. Seven Planet thinks American consumerism has spiraled out of control. So it’s somewhat odd that two-year-old company is aiming to create the world’s first chain of “green” general stores. Products for sale include the Less Trashy Lunch Kit and Berry Bright Natural Lip Gloss. The company believes that people should only consume what they need and should only purchase the most mindful products. Ah, that explains the Fish and Fur Wallet. According to the New York Times, the company is looking for store owners that can meet at least four sustainability requirements, such as providing carbon-neutral shipping and using renewable energy. “I know it’s seems like an oxymoron that we have a series of stores and I’m saying consumerism is a problem,” says Seven Planet co-founder John Friess. “We’re a store that tells you ‘don’t buy from us.’” And miss out on those Fish and Fur Wallets? No chance.