Is MAUI WOWI Juicing Its Franchise Numbers?
August 17, 2013
Maui Wowi franchise locations: How many are there? Honestly…?
According to the Maui Wowi Franchise Disclosure Documents (FDDs) – the ones submitted to governmental franchise agencies & that President Michael Haith swore under penalty of law are accurate – at the beginning of 2013 there were only 197 Maui Wowi locations worldwide.
In fact, according to Maui Wowi FDDs, the greatest number of Maui Wowi locations ever open in recent years was when the chain reached 317 locations in 2007.
After hitting 317 locations in 2007, the chain has declined in numbers each year to less than 200 according to company FDDs.
However, the number of Maui Wowi locations cited in franchise press releases and advertisements look a lot different.
According to 2009 press releases issued by Maui Wowi: “600 locations worldwide.”
According to a 2010 Franchise Times article: “More than 600 units across the globe.”
According to a December, 2012 Maui Wowi press release: “Over 600 operating units in eight countries”.”
According to Maui Wowi’s current (2013) LinkedIn profile: “600 locations worldwide.”
According to numerous 2013 Maui Wowi press releases: “over 400 operating units in eight countries.”
According to an April, 2013 recruitment ad with new CEO Michael Weinberger listed as the contact: “Over 450 locations worldwide.”
It is interesting that this year, Maui Wowi PR people seem to have dropped their seemingly inflated location count from “over 600” to “over 400.”
Is it Maui Wowi corporate policy to only overstate the number of operating locations by, say, 100%?
Is Maui Wowi Blatantly Lying or What?
The Internet is plastered with claims that Maui Wowi has 400+ to 600+ locations worldwide.
Yet even the Entrepreneur.com listing for Maui Wowi – using numbers supplied by the franchisor – indicates that the chain peaked at 370 locations in 2010 and has been in decline ever since.
Maui Wowi’s own disclosure documents indicate that the company may have peaked at only 317 locations at the end of 2007, and has been in decline ever since.
We find the disparity between the publicly stated numbers in their Entrepreneur listing and press releases and the numbers reported in their FDD to be a serious red flag worthy of extreme scrutiny.
If Maui Wowi is intentionally misrepresenting the size and strength of its chain in order to mislead franchise investors, shame on their marketing and PR people for not insisting on honesty and ethics.
|Maui Wowi Locationsincluding U.S., Canadian, International, Company Owned||Entrepreneur.Com||Franchise Disclosure Doc.*(end of each year)|
Sources: Entrepreneur.Com, *2006 – 2008 locations from Maui Wowi 2009 FDD, *2009-2012 Maui Wowi 2013 FDD
The Maui Wowi franchise is related to the Doc Popcorn franchise in that they both have some shared ownership, management and both use Michael Haith’s Marketing Sherpas for outsourced franchise sales.
ALSO READ: MAUI WOWI Franchise Complaints
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tags: Maui Wowi, Maui Wowi franchise, Maui Wowi franchise failures, Maui Wowi franchise complaints, Maui Wowi franchise cost, Michael Haith, Franchise Sherpas, Michael Weinberger, franchise fraud, coffee franchise, Doc Popcorn, Doc Popcorn franchise