The Basics of Franchise Accounting

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article |Franchising Your Business |The Basics of Franchise AccountingOwning a franchise is an easy and affordable way of starting a new business. As a franchise owner, a lot of the heavy lifting involved in starting a business is already done for you. Franchisees can take on an already established brand and don’t have to worry about marketing themselves, as this is done by the franchise centrally.

All the franchisee needs to worry about is dealing with the day to day running of the business, which includes the accounting. Many aspects of a franchise business will be managed centrally. In particular, the costs of marketing and developing new products don’t fall on the shoulders of individual franchisees.

Franchise accounting is similar to accounting for any other type of business, although there are a few extra steps. Let’s take a look at exactly what a franchise is and how they are run and managed.

How do Franchises Work?

A franchise location is owned by an individual, the franchisee. However, the franchise as a whole is owned by a larger corporation. For example, each individual McDonalds store is owned and operated by an individual franchisee. However, McDonald’s decides what’s on the menu, how the store functions, etc. They also handle all of the marketing and other costs of developing and growing the business.

franchising makes owning and operating a business accessible to people who would otherwise be unable to. Returning to the example of McDonald’s, a franchisee may be able to open a McDonald’s franchise as the first business that they run themselves. It’s hard to envisage most people launching a startup that has the kind of name recognition that McDonald’s does, or the existing infrastructure.

With the franchising model, new locations can be opened easily and quickly. From the perspective of the larger franchise business, this makes expanding a much simpler proposition. New franchisees will bear many of the responsibilities, and some of the costs, of opening a new franchise. If the new franchisee fails, the franchising corporation hasn’t lost as much in terms of time and money as it would if it had invested fully in a new physical location.

Franchisees, on the other hand, get to open a new business with an already established customer base, marketing strategy, etc. The franchisee will have to pay the franchising business according to their contract. This can either be in the form of a percentage of the profits, or it might be a flat rate.

Role of the Franchisor

The franchisor is the larger corporation that ultimately owns all the franchises. They manage the brand and business as a whole, deciding how to market the business and how to develop the available product ranges. The franchisor also provides assistance to their franchisees as and when it is needed.

Fees and Franchise Accounting

A franchisee owns the franchise location that they run, even though the business they operate is under license from the franchisor. They are required to follow all the guidelines set out by the franchisor. If they don’t, the license can be revoked and the franchisee can end up with a location but no business to occupy it. The franchisee will be required to pay fees to the franchisor; that’s how the franchising business makes their money.

The fees a franchisee pays are used to cover a number of costs. For example, these fees allow the franchisee to use the franchisor’s trademarks, brands, products, and services. Franchisors are legally required to set out all the fees involved in being a franchisee upfront and they cannot spring unexpected charges on the franchisee at a later date.

There will be an initial fee to pay the franchisor, which serves as a kind of entry charge. There will also be some form of ongoing fee, usually a royalty fee. Proper franchise accounting requires you to be familiar with all the expected fees and charges; you won’t be able to maintain accurate accounts unless you know what deductions and fees to factor in.

Initial Fees

The initial fee is the entry fee that grants the franchisee the right to use the franchisor’s trademarks, including brand, products, services, logos, etc. And, of course, the most important thing your initial fees will pay for is the right to use the franchisor’s name. Finally, your initial fee will cover some of the costs associated with opening a new business.

For example, the franchisor will cover the costs of training staff to use their point of sale systems, as well as any other in-house sales software. Initial costs are paid as a lump sum to the franchisor. Before you pay any initial fees, it is important that you establish exactly how much business capital you will need.

Amortizing Initial Fees

When filling out a business tax return, a franchisee can deduct their initial fee from their total profits; this is known as amortizing. Amortizing is similar in nature to depreciation, except that it deals with tangible rather than abstract assets. By amortizing a fee, its cost can be spread out over several years. This makes it possible for franchisees who can’t afford to pay a lump sum to instead pay the fee gradually over the useful lifetime of tangible assets, such as trademarks.

You can amortize the fee over a relatively long period of time, paying off fractions of it annually. For example, if you amortize your initial fee over a period of 20 years, you divide the total fee by 20 to work out how much of it you will pay per annum.

Royalty Fees

Royalty fees are the main way that the franchisor makes their money. Royalty fees are a little bit like a tax that the franchisee pays on every sale. This is the cut of the profits that the franchisor gets in exchange for essentially providing the core business. In some cases, royalty fees might be specified at a flat rate. However, the majority of the time they will be paid as a percentage of sales.

Marketing Fees

Some franchisors will further charge franchisees to cover the costs of marketing. Even though individual franchisees aren’t involved in the centralized marketing efforts, they still benefit from the effects of new marketing campaigns, so it does make sense that the franchisor would want to recover some of their investment.

Both franchisors and franchisees need to understand the intricacies of franchise accounting if the arrangement is to work. A mistake in a franchisee’s bookkeeping can end up in the franchisor being paid incorrectly and can lead to a distorted image of how healthy individual franchises are. For this reason, many franchisors are now centralizing their accounting and utilizing cloud-based accounting software. This allows individual franchisees to access and update their business accounts on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.


Franchise accounting needs sophisticated accounting software like QuickBooks Enterprise hosting which can be accessed on Citrix Xendesktop VDI that enables accountants to work remotely for franchise-based models to work from anywhere anytime.

Top Tips For Growing Your Franchise

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Franchise|Top Tips For Growing Your FranchiseWhether you’re an aspiring, emerging, or well-established franchisor, these simple tips on how to build and grow your concept still apply and always will. For development experts who know it all, it’s always a good idea to review the basics.

Franchising your company is a good way to earn more revenue, grow your brand, and take on exciting new opportunities. People often assume their franchise’s growth will come naturally, but businesses don’t grow on their own. You need to be willing to put in the work to make sure your franchise grows.

  1. Have a teacher’s mindset. There are lots of reasons that people decide to start and grow a franchise. Whatever your origins reason, remember that you need to be a teacher above everything else. You must be willing to teach others how to run a business so they can copy your model for success and use it to create a duplicate of your business that is just as successful. Without this mindset, you won’t do well.
  2. Start by perfecting your business model. The first thing that you need to do to grow a franchise is to work on perfecting your business model. Your business model needs to be clear-cut, successful, and easy to follow and share with others. Franchise management software can help to keep this consistent. The stronger your plan is, the better your organization will be able to run.
  3. Let things happen naturally. Don’t force growth. Let it happen naturally. The success of the establishments that you have should convince others to open a franchise. If you push it, then you’re putting new franchises at risk of failure, which will damage your name and reputation.
  4. Foster franchise relationships. For the organization to grow as a whole, the individual francises need to be successful. Create a culture of positive franchisee relations. Individual franchises need to be able to operate independently but rely on one another for help and advice.
  5. Build strong brand identity. If you want to grow your franchise, your brand identity needs to be strong. It should be recognizable throughout your industry. The stronger your brand identity is, and the easier it is to recognize, the better off your franchise will be.
  6. Create a balance between local and national. You could have a national franchise, with location all over the country, but there still needs to be a balance between your national name and the local establishment. This means that each establishment should stay in touch with the community it is based in, do local marketing, attend community events, and act as though it is a normal small business. You can’t just rely on national marketing for the whole franchise.
  7. Put strong franchise owners in your establishments. A franchise is only as good as the individual establishments, so it’s essential that you put strong franchise owners in place in each one. You will need to take the time to make sure that the right people are running each of your establishments.

The Top Strategies to Fast Track Your Business Growth

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Fast Track Business Growth|The Top Strategies to Fast Track Your Business GrowthAs a business leader or entrepreneur, it is likely that you are impatient to see progress in scaling up your business from a small company to a large corporation. To make sure that you are able to become one of the bigger market giants across the world, this guide will detail some of the best strategies that you can use to fast track your business growth and expansion.

1.Expanding into International Markets

International markets are the best way to make business boom and multiply your revenue quickly. By venturing into international markets, you will easily be able to connect with a much wider audience, meaning you will be giving many more people the opportunity to invest in your company.

However, it can be difficult to decide which overseas market you should consider expanding into, with factors such as cost, tax incentives, and their talent pools all coming under scrutiny. For those looking to expand in 2020, you should invest in Turkey due to its status as a manufacturing center that can provide you with low costs and beneficial government-backed incentives.

2. Combining Online and Physical Stores

Although most business leaders are flocking online to follow the latest trends, savvy executives know that a combination of digital and brick-and-mortar stores is the best way to grow their companies fast. This is because a combination of both methods widens the net, allowing your company to be accessible to a wider range of shoppers who all have different preferences to the way that they purchase products. This is also important if you are focusing on expanding in a local community or in a country whose digital infrastructure is not as extensive as within the USA.

3. Become an Exciting Investment Opportunity

Although you might believe that fast business growth relies on your company’s investments only, you also need to make sure that your business is an attractive business proposition. By appealing to angel investors, you will be able to get the funding that you need to grow quickly, by offering a more extensive range of products and services, employing more talent and expanding your premises across the country and beyond. This will prevent you from having to garner funding slowly through cutting costs and a gently increasing customer revenue.

4. Create a Partnership or Franchise Your Business

One of the quickest and most effective strategies for business growth that every owner should be aware of is to create a partnership with another person or company. By doing this, you will easily be able to pool your skills and share your individual successes. You might also consider merging with another company in order to easily absorb another’s success. You should also consider the advantages of franchising your business, which means that another company or individual can sell your products under their name. This allows you to connect with a wider proportion of your target customer base, while also enabling you to claim royalties on every sale.