At our October Lunch, Venture Connectors was pleased to host a panel discussion on the franchising experience — both from the perspective of entrepreneurs who have franchised their own companies and those who have partnered with major brands to launch a local franchise business.

The panel featured Chad Coulter, franchisee/franchiser in the restaurant industry (Biscuit Belly, LouVino); Melissa Richards-Person, former Global Franchise Chief Marketing Officer for leading hospitality, consumer, food & drink brands, including YUM! and Starbucks; and Jay Pitts, RE/MAX real estate and mortgage company franchisee. The panel was expertly moderated by Ellie Puckett, business broker and small business expert.

The panelists talked about what it means to buy a franchise that represents a known national brand, and how it can provide a shortcut to running a business, thanks to the processes and systems already in place. They shared that the cost of entry for a national franchise can be a lot higher than smaller, niche brands. They also offered insights into an owner’s involvement in the business, why it can be a good choice for some entrepreneurs, the support new owners can expect, and common misconceptions about the franchising experience.

Thank you to these smart, savvy professionals for offering their unique perspectives!