It sounds like a developer’s dream: open a Dunkin’ Donuts franchise near a major commercial building or hospital. Employees, visitors and patients will surely stop in for a cup of coffee on their way in, their way out or during a break. Landing such a development deal would surely be profitable—even in a tough economy. But, as many franchise owners have learned, profits dry up and customer counts drop when the building lands its own deal to sell Dunkin’ Donuts coffee on-site. Restricted for DDIFO Members Only
Forget the long lines at the mall, the constant barrage of commercialism, and the pressure of searching for the best deal for Wii RockBand. The true holiday spirit is alive and well at Dunkin’ Donuts, and employees are finding that giving back to the communities may be the best way to enjoy the season. Just ask Eric Stensland, field marketing manager for Dunkin’ Brands. He and some upstate New York franchise owners went on the ride of their lives last weekend with the U.S. Marines on the Toys for Tots Holiday Train, dropping off toys and warm clothes to children waiting at the several stations across the state.
A bill filed in the Massachusetts House of Representatives would change the current law defining who can collect tips at quick service restaurants (QSR) like Dunkin’ Donuts. State Representative Linda Dorcena Forry, (D-12th Suffolk), who is Co-Chair of the Joint Committee on Community Development and Small Business, filed the bill.
Over a year ago DDIFO commissioned the American Association of Franchisees and Dealers (AAFD) to review and grade the Dunkin Brands franchise agreement. The AAFD thru a group of executives, entrepreneurs and attorneys have worked for over 15 years to set standards for franchise agreements to make them more fair and equitable. The ultimate goal was to make franchising work better for everyone, believing that a spirit of communication and mediation led to better relations and business results. The AAFD set of standards are referred to as the “Fair Franchising Standards”, In the fall of 2008 DDIFO felt that the existing franchise agreement was causing excess friction and litigation between Dunkin Brands and the franchisees. DDIIFO felt this situation was caused in part by an inequitable franchise agreement, and that the litigation had not been good for the Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee community.
Alan J. Liddle reports at Nation’s Restaurant News that a judge has granted preliminary approval for the settlement of four class-action lawsuits filed by Quiznos Sub franchisees against their franchisor that could significantly alter the relationship of the feuding parties and cost the franchisor up to $100 million. The proposed settlement could impact more than 6,900 individuals now associated with the Denver-based Quiznos system “and several thousand who have closed their franchises,” attorneys for franchisees indicated in court documents.
Elaine Walker reports in the Miami Herald that Burger King’s franchisees say they no longer “trust” or “have confidence” in current management, so they’re going directly to the company’s board of directors with their complaints. That was the message in a letter sent by the National Franchisee Association last week to Burger King’s board of directors. The board needs to take action to repair the relationship with franchisees, which has disintegrated to a level unheard of even for Burger King, the letter said. “Your management team has pushed the franchise community to the brink,” said the letter signed by 27 franchises, including the NFA board and the heads of 21 regional franchisee associations. “We are taking this extraordinary and historic action to communicate our concerns directly to the board.”
The Buffalo News Business Today reports that the Syracuse-based company that is the largest single owner of Burger King franchises is standing by the chain’s promotion of a cut-rate double cheeseburger, and is not participating in an uprising being mounted by many other franchisees. The National Franchisees Association, on behalf of 850 other Burger King operators around the country, has filed a lawsuit against the Miami-based Burger King Holdings Inc., protesting the corporation’s insistence that its franchisees offer double cheeseburgers for $1.
DDIFO has been invited by a number franchise owners in a number of cities to come and meet franchise owners face to face. I am visiting Dunkin’ Donuts franchise owners around the country in an effort to learn more about your issues and concerns as well as share with you the vision and mission of DDIFO. The meetings have resulted in many franchise owners joining DDIFO. DDIFO welcomes 100’s of new shops as members from the following states: New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Florida, and Georgia.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Burger King Corp. has aggressively pushed its $1 double cheeseburger to attract price-conscious consumers, but the chain’s franchisees say the value pricing is costing them money. The National Franchisee Association, a Kennesaw-based group that represents more than 80 percent of U.S. franchised Burger Kings, filed a lawsuit this week against Burger King, a Miami, Fla.,-based chain, over pricing issues. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, seeks to prevent Burger King from dictating maximum pricing for the franchisees.
Ask Indy Joe is a new DDIFO feature where you the franchise owner can Ask Indy Joe a question. Today’s Question is: Is it better to be hands off or a micromanager? Today’s Answer is submitted by: Andrew Winig of Imrov Andy. Andy shares his cutting edge teamwork techniques through keynote speeches, interactive training sessions, and individual leadership coaching. Contact him at http://www.improvandy.com or at (781) 646-9543.