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Franchisors Seeking Young Entrepreneurs

We blogged about the success of Young Hunks Hauling Junk this week for a reason: we were pleased to highlight the success of young entrepreneurs. We’ve written in the past about how young grads are turning to franchising because jobs in the financial sector and beyond are gone at the moment. And guess what? It works both ways, as franchisors are beginning to search out the best young entrepreneurs.

There was a compelling story in the Wall Street Journal about this phenomenon recently. Essentially, franchisors are casting off worries about young business-people being too green or inexperienced and openly courting them.

"Quite frankly, sharp people coming out of school have choices, and so we're trying to give them a reason to at least consider us," says Joe Bourdow, president of Valpak

A lot of the story focuses on Valpak, and in particular, the relationship between young entrepreneur Nicholas Hernandez and his ‘boss and mentor’ Bobby Coco. Valpack has a strong program for rewarding successful young franchisees, and we’d urge our younger readers to explore franchises that go out of their way to train them and show them the ropes. It’s hard getting a business off the ground at any age, and it’s exciting to see a franchise going out of their way to provide incentives for young entrepreneurs.

Mr. Coco says programs like this were unheard of when he opened his first franchise at age 21—a move he could afford only because he convinced the owner at the time to give him a payment plan. "We really weren't handed the opportunity; we had to stick it out ourselves," he says. "We're at least giving them the opportunity, but they still have to earn it."

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