With over 3,000 choices of franchise concepts in the marketplace today, your options for owning your own business are limitless. But not all franchises are created equally.
Say hello to the Franchise Disclosure Document, or FDD for short. Quite simply, it’s a legal document mandated by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), designed to assist the potential franchisee through the due diligence process. Every legitimate franchise must produce one. If a company doesn’t, remove yourself from discussions as quickly as possible. At its core, the FDD removes any emotion from the process.
Under FTC guidelines, the FDD must be presented to the potential buyer in the pre-sales process no less than 10-14 days prior to entering a contract or paying any amount of money for a franchise. Regardless of the type, size or scope of a franchise opportunity, the FDD follows a strict format. FDD’s are uniform and consist of 23 specific items. Expect to see franchise fees, initial investment totals, trademarks, assigned territories, renewals, restrictions and advertising efforts. (more…)