Franchising Opportunities for Social Enterprise (FOSE)
A pilot project of Vancity & Vancity Community Foundation
Are you a franchisor?
We are actively seeking franchisors interested in engaging with non-profit organizations to launch successful social enterprise franchises in Lower Mainland BC. Partnerships between socially conscious franchisors and non-profit organizations have proven to be successful and provide a host of benefits. More information is available to franchisors, here.
Together we have provided strategic support and investment to organizations for planning or launch of enterprise from scratch. We are now exploring further alternative business development paths, such as franchising or business acquisition, for non-profit social enterprise that may facilitate improved success and viability of social enterprises and reduce risk to the organizations and funders.
Phase 1 - "Research" | September - December 2015
In the first phase of the project we carried out research to identify the most suitable franchise opportunities that have strong potential to achieve community impact and operate effectively as a social enterprise. Download the Preliminary Report.
Phase 2 - "Engagement & Evaluation" | January to April 2016
We are now in the second phase of the project actively engaging non-profits and franchisors. Five non-profits and five franchisors will be selected & evaluated using the frameworks developed in Phase 1 and best "matches" will be determined.
Phase 3 - "Implementation" | May to September 2016
Two potential social enterprise franchise deals involving 2 Surrey based non-profit organizations and 2 franchisors will be identified and developed with navigation support provided through Vancity. Our objective is to launch two social enterprise franchises in Surrey in the fourth quarter of 2016.
There are a number of benefits to partnering with us on this project:
Deal Navigation. We're here to help and to learn together. Both non-profits and franchisors will benefit from considerable support in the form of "deal navigation". The project advisor will facilitate conversations, support the due diligence process, identify required resources and generally assist the parties as required to help them successfully reach an agreement.
Prescreening & Evaluation. A considerable amount of time has already been spent determining the most promising franchise concepts with opportunities available in Surrey. The project will undertake a careful pre-evaluation of both the Franchisors and potential Franchisees. The objective of this "pre-work" is to determine the readiness of the non-profit for business and the readiness/will of the Franchisor for taking on a social enterprise model. Both the franchisor and the non-profit will be evaluated for strategic leadership, change management, stability, and financial acumen as well as their ability to foster collaborative relationships.
Research. Non-profits & Franchisors will both benefit from the project research. We have a solid understanding of the potential risks and benefits of this approach and the project is informed by interviews with franchisors, franchise lawyers, and a non-profit organization which owns and operates a local social enterprise franchise.
Support & Financing. Finally, the non-profits engaged in this project will be considered for the current programs, financial tools, and resources available through Vancity and Vancity Community Foundation for non-profits planning & developing social enterprises such as grants and loans. Non-profits that pursue a franchise as part of this pilot will be expected to qualify for financing on standard terms.