The 2014 Success Summit, held recently, put the focus on franchising with two of FASA’s members, Chairman Elect for 2015 John Baladakis of Pick n Pay and Lindy Barbour of Franchize Directions having the opportunity to address the seminar alongside eminent speakers including Dr Nondumiso Mzizana, Bill Gibson, Edith Venter and Billy Cobbinah of the IDC.
The Success Summit, the brainchild of Dr Nondumiso Mzizana, Businesswoman of the Year 2011 and CEO of Sikelela Medical, Dental and Pharmaceutical Supplies, focuses on empowering, fostering excellence in the area of small and medium enterprises, coach and mentor successful as well as aspiring entrepreneurs.
The 2014 Summit featured high profile speakers from both the public and private sector – all successful leaders and entrepreneurs with expertise in their industries. The core of the summit revolved around what constitutes meaningful and sustainable BB-BEE with the focus on broadening the reach of black equity ownership and tackling the challenges
Lindy Barbour, a director of Franchize Directions spoke on ‘the state of franchising in South Africa and expanding a business as a franchisor’ whilst John Baladakis, FASA’s Chairman Elect for 2015 and a Pick ‘n Pay franchisee spoke on ‘what makes a successful franchisee’, drawing on his background as a multiple store owner. Both were overwhelmed by the enthusiasm that the delegates at the Success Summit showed in the business format of franchising.
According to Lindy Barbour of Franchize Directions, “the majority of the delegates were small business owners, enlightened by the opportunity to network amongst one another and explore the prospect of expanding their respective businesses. It is important that we educate entrepreneurs about adopting a franchise mechanism responsibly and in line with the code of ethics prescribed by FASA”.
John Baladakis, a multiple franchise store owner and successful businessman in his own right gave a very frank and entertaining insight into what makes a successful franchisee, citing traits and talents ranging from “being an out-of the box thinker who believes in him or herself” to a ‘rule follower who stretches the boundaries and is prepared to one minute be a CEO, the next a cleaner!”
With many of the Development Finance Institutes (DFIs) having ventured into the financing of franchisees, with varying success rates, Lindeni Sangweni, Senior Investment Associate at the NEF noted that, with some funding initiatives, the NEF had poor experiences with selected franchise brands – none of whom were members of FASA. To this end, the Franchise Association of South Africa has gone to great lengths to impress on funding institutions that membership of FASA is essential to ensure that chosen franchisors adhere to the highest ethical principles.
According to Ian Jacobsberg, Chairman of FASA, ‘franchising is the ideal transformation vehicle as it ticks all the boxes when it comes to encouraging entrepreneurship, in skills training and in job creation.” But whilst franchising’s very foundation is one of strong business principles, commitment to ethical franchising calls for franchise companies to commit to stringent franchise principles as laid out by the Franchise Association of South Africa. “As the franchise sector in South Africa is not legislated”, says Jacobsberg, “membership of FASA is voluntary which means that those franchisors who do become members and subject themselves to rigorous scrutiny have a strong commitment to ethical business practices.”
Reference: The Franchise Association of South Africa – www.fasa.co.za.