Franchisors Actively Seek Minority Participation and Ownership

USA Today's Top 50 Franchises for Minorities in 2009

Friday, October 02, 2009

By C. Everett Wallace and Blair Cavagrotti

Given that minorities make up more than 30% of the U.S. population, it should come as no surprise that they are actively sought after as prospective franchisees. Currently, however, minorities account for less than 15% of franchise owners. Because of this underrepresentation and the fact that the minority market is currently underserved by the franchising community as a whole, an increasing number of progressive franchisors are aggressively trying to attract and support minority franchisees. The National Minority Franchising Initiative (NMFI), an organization whose sole purpose is to expand the number of minorities in franchising, has selected fifty of the leading franchisors in this area, as noted in the accompanying list. Their inclusion was based on their overall minority recruitment program, the percentage of minority franchisees currently within their system, and the percentage of minorities in key positions within the franchisor’s management.

Selected franchisors were enthusiastic about the achievements of their minority franchisees. Many felt that diversity has greatly contributed to the overall growth and success of their franchise systems.

According to Brad Smith, VP of Franchise Licensing at Jan-Pro Cleaning Systems, minority franchisees have been a crucial factor in Jan-Pro’s accomplishments. “Being the fastest-growing franchise for two consecutive years — we attribute a lot of that success to our minority franchisees — they have enabled Jan-Pro to grow to over 10,000 units nationwide, and we aim to continue to attract minorities to fuel that growth by offering financing and a low-cost, low-investment opportunity.”

John Hewitt, President and CEO of Liberty Tax Service, notes that minorities are especially important in a tax service franchise “because when you’re located in a minority population, you need representatives who speak the language.” He adds that “the fact that minorities have done so well in our organization has been one of the keys to our success because once they do well, they have friends and relatives that pile on and add to the success. A lot of our franchisees are referral-based.”

When asked about their commitment to attracting and supporting minorities, selected franchisors were eager to describe the programs they have in place.

Martin Amschler, Chief Development Officer for NexCen Franchise Management, explains, “We offer a variety of incentives for potential franchisees, including minority groups, across our multiple franchised brands and are proud of our shared passion for developing franchised stores in diverse communities across the country and around the globe.”

"Little Caesars is a company made up of people from many different backgrounds and cultures. With our simple operating model and extensive training, Little Caesars offers an opportunity for people to experience independence and achieve the American Dream of becoming their own boss," says Robert Mazziotti, Vice President, U.S. Development, of Little Caesar Enterprises, Inc.

The following list is a starting point in your search for the best franchise that matches your interest and requirements. For more information about the individual companies included in this list and their programs, please visit their websites or go to

Company Internet
Abrakadoodle Remarkable Art Education
Accor North America (Motel 6, Studio 6)
AIM Mail Centers
Anytime Fitness
Bonus Buliding Care
Captain D’s
Carlson Hotels Worldwide (Country Inns & Suites, Park Inn, Radisson)
Cartridge World
Choice Hotels International
Church’s Chicken
Coverall Health-Based Cleaning System
Cruise Planners/American Express
Express Employment Professionals
Focus Brands (Carvel, Cinnabon, Schlotzsky’s Deli, Moe's Southwest Grill)
FranchisESource (AdviCoach, Business Partner Marketing Coach, Entrepreneur's Source, The)
Froots Smoothies
Goddard School
Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery and Grill
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG)
Jack in the Box Inc.
Jani-King International
Jan-Pro Cleaning Systems
Kahala Brands (Cold Stone Creamery, Blimpie, TacoTime, Great Steak & Potato)
Liberty Tax Service
Little Caesars
Maid Brigade
Maid To Perfection
Mint Condition
Moran Industries (Milex, Alta Mere, Mr. Transmission, SmartView)
Nexcen Brands (Athlete's Foot, Maggie Moo's, Marble Slab Creamery, PretzelMaker)
Padgett Business Services
Planet Beach
Real Property Management
Red Roof Inns
Rita’s Italian Ice
Sales Partners Worldwide
Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina Restaurant
Seniors Helping Seniors
ServiceBrands (1-800 DryClean, Molly Maid, Mr. Handyman, Protect Painters)
ServiceMaster Brands (ServiceMasterClean, Furniture Medic, Merry Maids)
Strategic Franchising Systems (Caring Transitions, Fresh Coat, Growth Coach, Home Helpers)
Togo's Eatery
Vanguard Cleaning Systems
Volvo Rents