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DOC POPCORN Franchise Complaints

July 3, 2013

Doc Popcorn franchise complaints include food costs reportedly over 30%, high mall rents and failed stores.

The initial complaints were voiced by Steve, who commented on a QSR story/press release on Doc Popcorn, stating “Don’t look into this franchise. SEVERAL stores have shut down in the past 12 months. Food costs are over 30%. Mall rents are ridiculously high. before you look into this franchise, contact current franchisees. They’ll tell you the truth.”

Are you familiar with the Doc Popcorn franchise opportunity?  Please share a comment – positive or negative – below.

Why Doc Popcorn set off our BS detector

Doc Popcorn might be a legit opportunity (we don’t know, yet), but the UnhappyFranchisee.Com BS detector started flashing when we read their classic franchise growth exaggeration/sleight of hand in the QSR piece:

In April 2013 alone, Doc Popcorn awarded four multiunit franchise agreements, which, when fully developed, will represent a total of 20 additional locations in Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Oklahoma, and Southern California.

Since launching the franchise in 2009, Doc Popcorn has opened 80 locations in 25 states and has an additional 300 units in development…

Actually, Doc Popcorn does not have an additional 300 units in development.

They have simply sold the option for franchisees to open an additional 300 units.  The intentional misrepresentation of their growth statistics is, in our opinion, a red flag.

Here’s how their FDD reads:

We offer three separate franchises depending on the number of Doc Popcorn Businesses you wish to purchase. You must choose which type of franchise that you wish to operate at the time you sign your franchise agreement. A Single Unit Franchise enables you to own and operate one Doc Popcorn Business. A Standard Franchise enables you to own and operate up to three Doc Popcorn Businesses.  An Empire Builder Franchise enables you to own and operate up to five Doc Businesses. If you purchase a Standard Franchise or Empire Builder Franchise, you will enter our standard Franchise Agreement and Attachment I to the Franchise Agreement will indicate which type of franchise you purchased.

We reported on this ploy in regard to Beautiful Brands, whose QSR and Fast Casual stories stated that the company had thousands of units in development when, in actuality, it’s main franchise only opened 100 locations and most of those failed.

Hopefully Doc Popcorn will rein in whoever is putting the hype into its PR before its misleading franchise claims backfire, as they did for Beautiful Brands.

ARE YOU A DOC POPCORN FRANCHISE OWNER OR EMPLOYEE?  ARE YOU FAMILIAR WITH THE DOC POPCORN FRANCHISE OPPORTUNITY?  SHARE A COMMENT BELOW.

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TAGS: Doc Popcorn, Doc Popcorn franchise, popcorn franchise, Robert Israel, Renee Israel, Franchise Sherpa, Michael Haith, Raintree, franchise complaint, franchise failure

Comments

3 Responses to “DOC POPCORN Franchise Complaints”

  1. George Huye says:

    I purchased a Doc Popcorn franchise in Jan 2011. It looked like a simple process with great potential. I soon found out that the franchise group had little experience and were very awkward in their training and development . It took Doc Popcorn eight months to get me in business. Eight months to build a 11×20 kiosk. They went through several kiosk builders and I finally got my kiosk shipped to Baton Rouge. It looked cheap and it was. It began falling apart within a few months.
    From the time that I bought in until the day that I opened, popping corn and corn oil prices had soared to twice the price that I had shopped for before I bought the franchise. DP prices on bags and flavoring was twice to three times higher than on the open market. Support was nil after a few franchises were open.
    I lasted only13 months and lost $200,000 on the kiosk, equipment, supplies and the lease buyout.
    It was like a bad dream. Rob Israel and his staff lied to the franchisees from start to finish. I’ll bet you a dime to a dollar that my name is not listed in the FDD as a failed franchisee. All franchisees are suppose to be listed in the FDD. I have two DP franchised for sale cheap if you want to take a chance.

  2. ADMIN says:

    George:

    Sorry to hear about your bad experience as a Doc Popcorn franchisee. Thanks for sharing your story.

    I checked the Doc Popcorn 2014 FDD and, yes, your contact info is listed as a franchisee who has left the system.

    Item 20 indicates that there were a total of 117 Doc Popcorn franchises in operation from 2011 – 2013. There were a total of 32 closures (28) and terminations (4) which comes out to 28.3%.

    If you figure in the transfers to new owners, there appear to have been 130 signed franchise agreements during that time, with 13 sold to new owners. That indicated that about 35% of the Doc Popcorn franchise agreements ended in termination, ceased operations or sale to new owners (possibly at a loss).

    Compared to other franchises we analyze, that’s on the high side. If any Doc Popcorn representatives think our numbers or analysis are off, please let us know asap.

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