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March 19, 2022

Canadian franchises have the right stuff

What do franchises like Pizza Nova, M&M Meat Shops, Cora and Coffee Culture have in common?

They all have the ingredients to be financially successful.

In Canada, one out of every five dollars spent ends up in the cash register of a franchise operation.

That's more than $100 billion each year, proving savvy marketing, solid fiscal planning and some calculated risks are helping franchises prosper north of the 49th parallel.

In the inspirational new book, Great Canadians Franchise Stories, authors Felicia Pizzonia and Dawn Mucci take readers behind the scenes to find out how small ideas became great adventures.

For many years in elementary school, my daughters enjoyed hot and healthy meals at school courtesy of the Lunch Lady.

Founded by Oshawa, Ontario mother of three Ruthie Burd in 1993, Lunch Lady allows parents to pre-order meals for their children to be delivered right to the classroom.

Today, it's a multi-million-dollar operation that has expanded to cater to various markets -- not just schools -- with franchises spreading across Canada. But, it wasn't always that way.

In the early years, Burd writes in the book, "there were days when I cried my eyes out, listening to the Moody Blues on the tape deck while driving all over town to make my deliveries, worrying about the future and combating my own self doubt."

Burd persevered, grew the concept and kept knocking on doors looking for new clientele. Sweat and peristence paid off.

"As my husband likes to say, I have become an overnight success after 20 years of hard work," she writes.

Today, franchise businesses account for 40 per cent of retail sales in Canada and employ more than one million people.

With more than 78,000 franchise units in the country, it represents 10 per cent of Canada's gross domestic product (GDP).

Lorraine McLachlan, president and CEO of the Canadian Franchising Association says "entrepreneurial spirit is strong in Canada.

"The many inspiring stories of leadership within franchising are not only interesting but also motivational for any aspiring entrepreneur, business person or franchise operator."

The book from The Ultimate Publishing House is required reading for anyone considering investing in a business dream that could spawn a franchise.

By Donna Donaldson, MSN Money

 Have you ever considered going into a franchise? Is there anything keeping you from your dream?




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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

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