Publisher's Message September/October 2020

Publisher’s Message: The Resiliency of Canadian Franchising

The Canadian economy has come a long way in the past two months since our July/August issue. While the economy was then just starting up again, many businesses have since reopened across Canada and franchisees have adapted to operate under physical distancing guidelines, PPE regulations and cleaning requirements.

Throughout this crisis, Canadian franchises have proven their resiliency. Faced with unprecedented challenges, including complete business shutdowns for months, Canadian franchisees are back up and running, eager to provide products and services for Canadians in a safe environment.

Franchises have taken time throughout this crisis to learn, grow, and adapt. In this September/October 2020 Food Issue of Franchise Canada magazine, we focus on how franchises, particularly in the food sector, have embraced innovation to better serve their customers in this difficult time.

The food service category is the largest franchising sector in Canada and it was hit hard by physical distancing measures. In our cover story, three quick service food franchises outline how they’re innovating to adapt to these challenges, and how they’re supporting their franchisees along the way.

BeaverTails, which traditionally operates in tourist areas, is providing its one-of-a-kind pastries through food trucks in community areas. The Mary Brown’s Chicken & Taters team has worked together with its franchisees to launch its spicy chicken innovation during this uncertain time. And OPA! of Greece has put franchisees at the forefront, along with a focus on technology.

Franchisees are also showcasing their resolve. Take Fredericton, New Brunswick Pür & Simple franchisee Tianchen Liu, for example. The 27-year-old was scheduled to open his restaurant doors to the public in April but was delayed in opening until late June. In the Millennials in Franchising article, Lui shares how he overcame these setbacks and turned this challenge into an opportunity.

You can also learn from other successful food franchisees throughout the issue, including multi-unit Subway Canada franchisee Kelly-Anne Pelley. The Best Franchisee of Canada finalist describes her experience at the Best Franchisee of the World competition and reveals the secrets behind her years of franchising success. McDonald’s franchisees Pierre Marois and Pierre Jacoub outline their journey to multi-unit franchise ownership in Nova Scotia, along with how they’re navigating challenges brought by COVID-19. We also showcase bakery franchise COBS Bread in our Iconic Brand article, where multi-unit Calgary franchisee Jeremy Banning explains how the COBS community has helped him navigate the crisis.

While food franchises have had to innovate and adapt, so too have service-focused salon and spa franchises. We highlight four beauty franchises that have used this time to bring their franchisee teams closer together and examine what their franchises will look like in this new distanced environment. We also introduce you to four families who operate their franchises together, where they share how they rely on each other to make it through this difficult time and continue to build their businesses.

The franchise business model itself has played a big role in helping franchisees adapt in the face of challenges. Three franchise professionals explain the benefits of franchise ownership compared to independent business ownership, and the reasons why franchises are in a good position to quickly and successfully fill market gaps left by the economic downturn.

This issue is full of stories of perseverance, showcasing the strength and tenacity of Canadian franchisees in the food sector and beyond. To learn more about the power of franchising and how to get started, we encourage you to check out our additional resources at www.FranchiseCanada.Online and to follow the Canadian Franchise Association (CFA) on social media. We hope this issue inspires you to kick-start your career in franchising so you can make your business ownership dreams come true. Stay safe!