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The Top 100 Global Franchises 2010

Franchise Direct has compiled its annual ranking of the top global franchises. Based on data from around the globe, this listing compiles the best of the best international franchises. The ranking, based on objective, quantifiable measures of franchise expansion worldwide, provides a person looking for a franchise opportunity anywhere in the world the listing of franchises that have blazed a trail of global expansion by adapting to local cultures yet keeping in place the world class systems that brought initial success.


The Top 10

 Green initiatives spell success for Franchisors

For the second year in a row, McDonald’s has topped Franchise Direct’s Top 100 Global Franchises. McDonald’s franchise business has not only survived but thrived through boom times and recessions. This is due not only to continual innovation and adaptation to market conditions but also to green initiatives and programs implemented by the company. In an effort to reduce their carbon footprint, McDonald’s provide all their franchises with guidance and support to improve the energy efficiency and sustainability. When McDonald’s introduced the “Filet-of-Fish” sandwich, they decided it was both responsible and in the interest of their business to help protect the health and productivity of their suppliers’ fisheries. The company is now working with fish suppliers and Conservation International (CI) to develop a set of sustainable fisheries’ guidelines in an effort to maintain fishery standards1.  McDonald’s continues to work with their suppliers to reduce waste and packaging and develop more energy efficient equipment, especially for inside their kitchens.

At number 6 in Franchise Direct’s Top 100 Global Franchises, IHG launched an innovative new online sustainability tool, Green Engage. This system is designed to assist their general managers across the entire hotel portfolio to manage energy, water and waste consumption more effectively and reduce their carbon footprint. IHG have also set up a carbon strategy team. The team’s principal steps so far have been to create internal and external awareness and knowledge of regulatory requirements and work with the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) to understand better its approach to the Carbon Reduction Commitment. IHG are aiming to “make a night with IHG more carbon efficient2


Top 10 Global Franchises


Rank Name of Franchise Business Description Country of Origin Started as a Franchise Business Countries Total Units International Units
1 McDonalds QSR US 1955 117 32,158 13,580
2 Subway QSR US 1974 91 32,501 9,432
3 KFC QSR US 1952 109 22,200 15,000
4 Burger King QSR US 1954 73 11,500 4,000
5 7-Eleven Convenience store US 1964 15 29,300 22,330
6 InterContinental Hotels Hotel UK 1956 100 4,400 1,074
7 Pizza Hut QSR US 1959 91 13,100 4,221
8 Snap-on Tools Home Improvement Store US 2001 150 3,400 300
9 Taco Bell QSR US 1964 100 5,845 245
10 Ramada Worldwide Hotel US 1989 47 910 359


Image 1: Comparison of international units vs. domestic units for Franchise Direct's Top 10 Global Franchises


Graph: Comparison of international units vs. domestic units for Franchise Direct's Top 10 Global Franchises


Image 2: System size of Franchise Direct's Top 10 Global Franchises by unit number


Graph: System size of Franchise Direct's Top 10 Global Franchises by unit number




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