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Welcome to the world of franchising

- Bryan and Andrea McGinness are CEO and COO of WineStyles Tasting Station and write quarterly about the world of franchising for IowaBiz.com.

Have you ever considered owning your own business but feel overwhelmed and not sure where to start? If so, you’re not alone and you’ve come to the right place. Hello and welcome to the world of franchising – where you can go into business for yourself, but not by yourself.

My name is Andrea McGinness, and my husband Bryan and I own a franchise concept called WineStyles Tasting Station. We have more than 20 locations in the U.S. and our company is based in West Des Moines, just a few miles away from our house. We are very excited to be new IowaBiz bloggers and look forward to sharing our business experiences and educating readers on the world of franchising.

For our first post, we’d like to focus on the recent 2016 growth report from the International Franchise Association (IFA). The IFA is the oldest and largest group representing franchising worldwide. They work to protect, promote and enhance franchising. We’re very proud to be part of and support such a wonderful organization.

The IFA recently released its 2016 Franchise Business Economic Outlook. The report found that franchise small businesses will once again grow at rates that exceed non-franchise business growth. Here are a few of the key findings:      

  • Franchise businesses will have a 3.1 percent growth in jobs, adding 278,000 direct jobs to the economy this year for a total of 9.1 million.  
  • The number of establishments will grow this year by 13,359, or 1.7 percent, to 795,932.
  • The gross domestic product (GDP) of the franchise sector will increase by 5.6 percent to $552 billion in 2016. To put this impressive growth into perspective: This will exceed the growth of U.S. GDP in nominal dollars, which is projected at 4.4 percent.

Franchising encourages entrepreneurship and allows first-time business owners to tap into their entrepreneurial spirit and become a part of a proven business model. As a franchisor, a strong growth forecast is good news. And let’s not forget that franchise businesses are leading to more jobs in local communities nationwide.

The beauty of franchising is that you can start small with one location. That’s what we did. First we were a WineStyles franchisee before deciding to purchase the enterprise in 2012. We have always been passionate about the company, so we were thrilled when we were presented with the opportunity to own the concept.

There’s nothing better than helping other entrepreneurs turn their passion into a full-time gig. There are over 300 franchise business formats to choose from, whether you love pets, cars or travel. As wine lovers and foodies, you can understand why we chose this path.

Thank you for reading our first blog. We can’t wait to share more stories and industry insights with our fellow Iowans.

Cheers!

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