Inequities in Franchise Relationship Are A Global Issue – Over the course of the past few weeks, we’ve reported on efforts to enact “fair franchising” legislation in Maine, California and Massachusetts. Notwithstanding arguments by the IFA and others that infusing a more equitable balance into the franchise relationship would be devastating, the “land down under” now weighs in on the issue! Australia’s 2013 Review of the Franchising Code of Conduct (Review) was recently released and it contains 18 recommendations for amendments to the Franchising Code of Conduct. In summary format, the areas covered by the discussion paper include, among others: good faith in franchising; enforcement and disclosure under the code; end of term arrangements and dispute resolution. Isn’t the major thrust of the California initiative (SB 610) essentially good faith in franchising?
Speaking of Good Faith in Franchising – California’s “good faith in franchising” initiative (SB610) has passed the state Senate and is slated for debate and deliberation in the Assembly as early as the week after next. In fact, it is tentatively scheduled for debate on June 18, but could come up as early as next week. Should the bill be passed by the Assembly, it would then be sent to Governor Jerry Brown for his deliberation and signature. There is still much work to be done there!
Tax Cutting in North Carolina – North Carolina’s first major tax-reform plan to make it to a vote so far in 2013 was approved by the N.C. House finance committee this week and will now move on to the House floor for consideration. The proposal replaces the state’s current progressive income tax rates with a flat 5.9 % by January 2014. Read about here.
DDIFO Connecticut/New York Meeting – DDIFO just this week sent a formal announcement of our next Membership Meeting, which will be held at the Heritage Hotel and Conference Center in Southbury, Connecticut on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. We are excited to welcome employment law Attorney Hugh F. Murraya partner in the Hartford office of the major law firm of Murtha Culina LLP who will present on employment law issues nationally as well as in Connecticut up to and including their mandatory paid leave act. In addition, we have confirmed that Tax Attorney Matt Kelley, based in the Dallas office of Ernst & Young, will again present on the requirements and implementation schedule of the Affordable Care Act (Obama Care). He gave a great presentation and was so well received at our meeting in Chicago that we are delighted to have him back. He will again advise franchisees of all the steps they must take in order to ensure they are in compliance with the new federal health care mandates. The complete program will run from 2 PM until 7 PM including a cocktail reception from 5 PM to 7 PM. This meeting is open to all Dunkin’ Donuts franchisees, so plan to join us in Southbury on June 26!
We confirmed this meeting and contracted with the Conference Center unaware that the Eastern NY DAC meeting will be held on June 26 in Tarrytown, NY. We are sorry for the conflict and will look forward to welcoming our NY franchise owners at a future date, but unfortunately cannot cancel the meeting at this late date. We regret the conflict.
DDIFO National Conference – DDIFO is still working hard on scheduling speakers and presentations for the 2013 DDIFO National Conferenced this September 16 – 18 at Caesar’s Atlantic City. At this juncture, we’re planning a great lineup of presentations that will include our Restaurant Analyst, John Gordon’s “The View From The Street”. In addition, we’ve confirmed that we will also present “A Conversation with Dunkin’ Franchise Stars”, a casual conversation among major franchisees which attendees will be able to “listen in on”. We’re confident this different kind of presentation will be one of the highlights of this year’s conference! In another week, we will be meeting with Caesar’s officials to discuss possible travel options for our members to and from Philadelphia – Spirit Air, which flies to Atlantic City, just announced that they’ve cancelled flights in September after deciding to end their seasonal flights early this year. We will advise members of additional travel options as soon as possible. In the meantime, watch for registration materials coming soon and plan now to attend the 2013 DDIFO National Conference in Atlantic City, NJ, September 16 through 18, 2013!
More opposition to Swipe Fee Settlement! – The National Restaurant Association this week announced a decision to continue its opposition to a proposed settlement in ongoing litigation over credit card interchange swipefees. The NRA objects to the settlement because ït does not gix the broken swipe fee marketplaced, severely limits merchants’ ability to challenge unfair card network fees and practices in the future. To read more about the NRA position, click here!
CFA Lobby Day is one month away – Franchisees should plan to attend the Coalition of Franchisee Associations (CFA) Lobby Day Forum in Washington DC one month from now. The two-day conference with visits to Congress to discuss issues of import to the franchisee community is scheduled for July 8 through July 10 at the Fairmont Hotel in the District’s Georgetown section. DDIFO strongly encourages members to attend the event. Register for the Forum here.
Competitor News – Krispy Kreme reported sales and earnings for the 1st quarter on May 30. US same store sales were up 11%, due to 3% price and 8% traffic, sales increases for the 18thquarter in a row. Company stores are now profitable. Krispy opened 1 US store in Q1 and plan to open 10 for the year. Beverage mix has moved to 5% (vs 4% last year) and they hope to be at a 20% sales mix — eventually. They have one prototype smaller factory store that opened and is at $36K/week in total sales. When pressed, CEO Jim Morgan resisted analysts’ urgings to compare Krispy to Dunkin’ Donuts.
In other competitor news, Paul House, current Tim Horton Executive Chairman, President and CEO, said at a Goldman Sachs Conference in New York this week that Mark Caira, who will assume the roles of Executive Chairman, President and CEO in July, will focus his early efforts on growing the brand in the US. House, who will transition into a new role of non-executive Chairman when Caira assumes his position in July, said they are at a critical point in their growth plans. Read the full story here.
DD Shops in the News – Dunkin’ shops throughout the Greater Buffalo area will be participating next week in the “Make a Muscle, Make a Difference” campaign to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Donations will be collected June 9-16 and guests who elect to contribute $1 to the MDA will receive a paper donut icon which may be displayed with the customer’s name on the wall of participating restaurants. A similar campaign is being conducted in all upstate markets, including Albany, Binghamton, Elmira, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica and Watertown.