How do Private Equity Deals work in Franchising?


Private equity deals in franchising involve private equity firms investing in franchise businesses. In the franchise market, there is a increasing number of private equity firms and private equity deals in franchise systems than ever before.  Here’s an overview of how private equity deals typically work in the franchising industry:


1. Identification of Target Franchise

Private equity firms identify franchise businesses that align with their investment criteria and growth strategies. They may look for established franchise brands with strong market positions, growth potential, and a proven track record of profitability.


2. Due Diligence

The private equity firm conducts comprehensive due diligence on the target franchise. This includes analyzing financial statements, assessing the franchise’s market position, evaluating the strength of its business model, reviewing franchise agreements, and examining legal and regulatory compliance. The goal is to gain a thorough understanding of the franchise’s operations, financial health, growth prospects, and any potential risks.


3. Investment Structure

Once due diligence is complete, the private equity firm determines the investment structure. This includes deciding the amount of equity to be invested, potential debt financing, and the overall valuation of the franchise business. Negotiations may take place between the private equity firm and the franchisor to reach an agreement on the terms and conditions of the investment.


4. Investment and Ownership Stake

The private equity firm invests capital into the franchise business in exchange for an ownership stake. The specific ownership percentage and governance rights may vary depending on the terms of the deal. The private equity firm becomes a strategic partner and actively participates in the management and decision-making processes of the franchise.


5. Operational Improvement

Private equity firms often bring operational expertise and industry knowledge to the franchise business. They work closely with the franchisor and management team to identify areas for improvement, implement operational efficiencies, and drive growth strategies. This can involve streamlining operations, optimizing supply chains, enhancing marketing efforts, and expanding the franchise network.


6. Expansion and Acquisition Strategy

Private equity-backed franchise businesses may pursue expansion initiatives, such as opening new franchise locations, acquiring complementary brands, or entering new markets. The private equity firm provides financial resources and strategic guidance to support these growth initiatives, leveraging its network and industry connections to facilitate expansion opportunities.


7. Exit Strategy

Private equity firms typically have a predefined exit strategy in mind when investing in a franchise business. This may involve selling the franchise to another private equity firm, taking the franchise public through an initial public offering (IPO), or selling to a strategic buyer. The timing of the exit depends on various factors, including market conditions, the franchise’s performance, and the private equity firm’s investment objectives.


Throughout the entire process, private equity firms work closely with franchisors and management teams to align their goals, drive value creation, and enhance the overall performance of the franchise business. It is essential for franchisors and franchisees to carefully evaluate the potential benefits and implications of private equity involvement and ensure alignment of interests to maximize the success of the partnership.


For more information on how to Franchise Your Business and How to create opportunities with Private Equity Firms in Franchising, contact Franchise Marketing Systems (FMS Franchise):