Expo rich in franchise opportunities

Published Jan 30, 2019


DURBAN - In a first for KwaZulu-Natal, Ithala is hosting the Franchise Association of South Africa’s (Fasa) flagship event - the 21st International Franchise and Entrepreneur expo.

The expo, to be held at the Durban Exhibition Centre on March 8 and 9, will bring together franchisors, potential franchise buyers, franchise suppliers and businesses looking to franchise.

“Ithala approached Fasa as part of its efforts to grow its Franchise Fund portfolio and provide SMME’s and co-operatives in KZN with opportunities to enter the franchising industry, not only as franchisees but also a means to convert their businesses into franchises,” said Pearl Bengu, Ithala group chief executive.

“The exhibition focuses on entrepreneurship. In line with Ithala’s economic growth and job creation mandate, we aim to bring investment into KZN and match this with people keen to run their own businesses,” she said.

“After holding franchise exhibitions in Johannesburg for the past 20 years, Fasa is proud to be expanding its footprint in the provinces - affording prospective franchisees the opportunity to meet representatives from franchise brands face-to-face and find out more about the opportunities offered by the franchise sector,” said Vera Valasis, Fasa executive director.

With some 40 home-grown brands spread across a broad spectrum of sectors from the automotive industry to beauty, IT, technology, baking and tourism exhibiting as well as regular talks by experts; there will be plenty for the thousands of visitors expected.

Free talks will take place on matters crucial to buying and owning a franchise. Topics include how to evaluate a franchise business; what is the best way to fund a franchise and how to turn your business into a franchise.

Bengu said the focus of the exhibition was on brands wanting to expand into the province and which are financially accessible to new franchisees.

Franchising offers aspiring business owners a standardised proven business practice with access to certain centralised services such as supply chain, marketing, training, financial support as well as the value of the trade-name or trademark, Bengu said.

“This form of business is also favoured by funders as most of the business and financial risks are minimised provided the entrepreneur adheres to the stipulated business practice standards.

“Franchising is a great way to get the much needed experience of entrepreneurship, especially for the youth.

It is a way of being in business for yourself but not by yourself,” said Bengu.


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