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Top 100 Global Franchises 2012




Every franchise operation that possesses the adequate resources cannot ignore the opportunities and possibilities that come with global expansion.

top100globalfranchise-1Several foreign markets in places like South America, Eastern Europe, and Asia are experiencing rapid middle class growth that’s taking place concurrently with a spike in economic growth that outpaces that of the United States. The growth of a global middle class is advantageous for franchisors seeking to expand into new markets. Philip F. Zeidman, senior partner of the law firm DLA Piper LLP US and member of the IFA (International Franchise Association) General Counsel, describes the middle class as “the pool from which both franchisees and consumers are drawn”. Furthermore, as Zeidman adds, “there is hardly a place in the world in which there is not a growing appetite for Western goods and services.”1

top100globalfranchise-1According to a number of respected industry analysts, the franchise industry, which has proved to be a steady and resilient industry, is primed for “an acceleration in the number of franchise businesses in 2012 and continued modest growth in employment and economic output.” Franchise growth rates are expected to vary significantly across the various industry segments with personal services franchises and retail products and services franchises leading the way.2

Each year, Franchise Direct ranks the top internationally-operating franchise companies from around the globe, not just ones based in the United States. This literally world-class list details the franchises that are prospering with operations in at least two countries.

The Top 100 Global Franchises have been selected from a candidate pool of hundreds of franchises that have invested time and resources in international expansion strategies. The most recent and accurate data possible on these franchise systems was gathered by way of information self-reported by companies, Franchise Disclosure Documents (FDDs), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings, and published industry sources. The data was then entered into a formula based upon an objective methodology that incorporates a host of criteria which includes, but is not limited to:


  • System size, based on number of units
  • Sales revenue for the company
  • Number of years in franchising
  • Stability and growth
  • Support for prospective and current franchisees
  • Environmental policies
  • Corporate citizenship

All of the Top 100 Global Franchises share the keys to business success at any level: a well-defined business identity, a clear business plan, a commitment to training and support, sensitivity to environmental issues, and an ability to innovate to keep pace with ever-changing social and economic conditions.

Additionally, on top of these qualities, each of the franchises in the Top 100 Global Franchises have also acquired the necessary linguistic dexterity and combined them with cultural sensitivities to grow their respective businesses beyond their home borders. Because of these attributes, the Top 100 Global Franchises serve as models for early-stage franchises looking to expand, as well as those businesses considering franchising their offerings.

Please note that the Top 100 Global Franchises Rankings and Report are not intended to endorse, advertise, or recommend any particular franchise system. It is solely an objective look at some of the world’s top franchise operations that operate internationally.




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