Francorp Philippines celebrated its 20th year anniversary by honoring leaders in the franchising industry. Over 300 franchise icons, entrepreneurs and government leaders celebrated 20 Years of Franchise Leadership in the Ibiza Beach Club in BGC. The event highlighted top franchise brands in the country and recognized young, up and coming brands making it big in franchising both locally and internationally.
Seven brands were Inducted into the Francorp Hall of Fame for epitomizing excellence in the franchise industry. Max’s Restaurant, Bench, Goldilocks &Penshoppe were inducted into the Hall of Fame: P10B Club, for achieving systemwide sales of over 10B both locally and across the globe.
Inducted into the Hall of Fame: 1,000 Club were The Generics Pharmacy, for having achieved over 2,000 stores in just 10 years& Potato Corner who grew to over 1,000 stores in the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, USA, Panama, and across the world.
Jollibee, one of Francorp’s first clients, was awarded the first ever Double Hall of Fame award for having achieved both P10B in sales and 1,000 stores across the globe.
Samie Lim, Co-Founder & Chairman Francorp shares“This is not just a recognition of their excellence, but also an affirmation to the world that the Philippines is the breeding ground for successful, world class franchise concepts.”
Transforming the Philippines to the Franchise Hub of Asia
From virtually a non-existent franchise player in the 1990’s, the Philippines has transformed itself and has positioned itself not only as the Franchise hub of Asia, but also the Top 5 Franchise market in the world. With over 1,500 franchise brands, and a diverse market that spans across service, retail and food, the Philippines continues to be a thought leader in franchising around the world.
Francorp CEO Bing Limjoco recounts, “Our love affair with franchising began in 1993 when we came across a Philexport USAID-funded study that said “franchising will be the next fastest rising industry”. Back then, not many people in the Philippines were aware of what franchising was. Samie Lim, Manny Siggaoat, and I were already active members of the Philippine Retailers Association and this concept sparked our interest so much that it triggered the groundwork towards franchise-related activities.”
“Because we believed that in order to have a voice and create the infrastructure for franchising, we needed to band together. So we registered the Philippine Franchise Association in 1995 with 15 business owners as incorporators. Today, the association hasover 600 brands who contribute 70-80% of the total franchise sales in the Philippines.” Lim, adds.
A Rocky Start
Beyond creating an association, it was critical that services were created to help transform businesses into professional, world-class franchises. “Since we knew very little about franchising, we searched long and hard for consultancies we can work with, from Europe, Asia and the US. After a long search, we decided to work with the franchise consultancy firm that helped in Jollibee’s expansion – Francorp. Francorp in the U.S. is the oldest and most respected franchise consultancy firm. It has 27 offices worldwide, covering 45 countries.” Limjoco adds.
The industry had a rocky start, as when Francorp Philippines started operating in 1997, the Asian Financial Crisis hit. But as a true testament to the power of franchising, a handful of SMEs trusted and used franchising to come out of the crisis bigger and stronger. “Many mom and pop stores whose hands we held during their baby steps in franchising are now international brands to reckon with. In our own small way, we are thankful that they entrusted us with growing their brands.”
“When we were starting, we strived to learn the best practices in franchising from the more mature franchise markets around the world. It is heartening to note that now, we are the ones teaching and sharing our know how with the world when it comes to franchising. We are now considered as the franchise hub of Asia, with the biggest number of internationally Certified Franchise Executives outside the US, and is top 5 in the number of franchise concepts.” Lim shares with pride.
Growing from One to Many
“When my father and his cofounders established Francorp in the Philippines 20 years ago, reaching a hundred outlets was the lifetime goal of most businesses.” Says Manuel Siggaoat Jr, Managing Director of Francorp. “But today, we are able to welcome more brands into ‘The 100 Club’. Thanks to franchising, these brands have achieved over 100 stores in less than 5 years” adds Siggaoat.
Infitinea (200+ branches), Farron Café (200+ branches), Turks Shawarma (300+ branches), LC BigMak (700+ branches) and Mr. Quickie (300+ branches) were all awarded with the One to Many Award: The 100 Club).
Breaking the stereotype that franchising is only for older, established players, the One to Many: The Millenial Club award recognized young entrepreneurs who were able to achieve double digit branches in less than 3 years. Awardees were Don Cenita (28 years old) of Citrus Zone (52 outlets), Aiza Valencia (25 y.o.) of BenteSilog (50+ outlets), Walther Buenavista (28 y.o) of Shawarma Shack (28 outlets) and KristineLim (32 y.o) of Johann Coffee (10 branches).
International Filipino brands were also recognized in the International trailblazer awards with Crystal Clear for their expansion into Indonesia, Malaysia, and Sierra Leone. Oryspa in Singapore, Myanmar and Vietnam. Mineski Infinity Cyber Café with over 140 global outlets in the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. Waffle Time from Iloilo to Indonesia, Pancake House in Malaysia, Brunei & UAE & Bo’s Coffee in Qatar.
Lim proudly share that as for Francorp, as it celebrates its 20th year in the Philippines, “we are also proud to say that after twenty years, Francorp has become an enabler and multiplier – having served some 500 clients in various stages of their growth, helping generate over 250,000 jobs and being awarded as the “International Master Franchise of the Year” in the Franchise Excellence Awards. More importantly, Francorp is proud to have helped plant Filipino franchise brands in every Asean country and in every continent around the world except Antarctica”
Christopher Lim, Chief Marketing Officer of Francorp shares, “When a company has achieved so much, thinking of what’s next is not an easy task. So to look forward, we had to look back at the founding mission of Francorp – which was to create world class franchise brands that help create thousands of entrepreneurs and millions of jobs. So we decided that to continue fulfilling this mission we had to grow from 1 consulting company to a group of consulting services.”
From a small group of 5 people when it initially opened its doors, Francorp is a consulting group with over 5 brands and 40 people spread across the Philippines. With series ranging from Franchise Sales & Marketing through U-Franchise Sales & Management, Digital Marketing through Zoom Lab Digital, International Branding through AS Louken Sachi and Franchise financing through Franchise Investment Holdings, Inc.
“Beyond creating new services, we’ve also expanded our footprint. We have opened branches in Davao and Cebu and are setting our sights to ASEAN. By the end of the year, we would be expanding our services in Thailand and are in discussions for an entry into Myanmar and Indonesia.” Chris Lim adds.
As to where will the industry move next, Samie Lim shares “Moving forward, we would like to see the day when Filipino franchise brands will become one of the top foreign exchange earners in the country. Exporting a franchise business is more valuable and sustainable than just exporting a few seasonal products. We want the Philippines to be the number one exporter of franchise brands across ASEAN region in terms of number of exported franchise brands.”