NPR Reports on Franchising & Franchise Problems

(UnhappyFranchisee.Com) Franchising and many problems facing unhappy franchisees are a growing subject in the media, as evidenced by excellent reporting undertaken by Chip Mitchell and Shannon Heffernan of National Public Radio affiliate WBEZ in Chicago.

Mitchell and Heffernan were initially focused just on the labor disputes and lawsuits being waged by fast food workers against the large franchisors like McDonald’s.

But as the reporters dug deeper, they realized that discussions of wage theft and minimum wage issues must take into account that the big franchisor companies pass the buck to their franchisees, as the franchise owners – not the huge corporation – are the W-2 employers.

This passing-of-the-buck logically leads to the discovery that franchisee margins (and businesses) have been squeezed so tight by their franchisors that many franchise owners could not survive the types of minimum wage increases being proposed.

As the debate over minimum wage and wage theft increases, we are going to see increased debate over whether franchising itself is to blame for the labor problems in these areas.

In Mitchell and Heffernan’s reports, some experts say that franchising has cut the revenue “pie” into too many pieces, creating an inefficient system incapable of providing workers with the living wage they need to survive.

UnhappyFranchisee.Com publisher Sean Kelly was interviewed for and contributed to the series.

We believe that more and more news outlets will be drawing from the stories on this site as these debates escalate.

“Bigger than burgers and fries, franchising blamed for low wages” (NPR)

Popular business model squeezes small business owners between corporations and workers.

Here’s a link to the NPR story:

Bigger than burgers and fries, franchising blamed for low wages

Listen to the WBEZ broadcast online:

WBEZ – Franchising (Part 1 of 3): Why this business model works


WBEZ – Franchising (Part 2 of 3): Effects on the workplace


WBEZ – Franchising (Part 3 of 3): Franchisee or employee?


WBEZ – Afternoon Shift:  Franchises: Beyond the burgers


UnhappyFranchisee.Com posts on the NPR report:

7-ELEVEN Franchise Owners are Glorified Managers, Franchisee Tells NPR

CLEANNET USA Franchise is a Scam, Attorney Claims

Franchise Attorney Kevin Murphy Debunks the Value of the Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)

UnhappyFranchisee.com featured on NPR’s Franchising: Behind the Burgers

How Franchising Works – NPR Video

The NPR story was supplemented by this nicely produced video entitled “How Franchising Works – An Illustrated Guide.”


Thanks Chip Mitchell and Shannon Heffernan of National Public Radio affiliate WBEZ in Chicago for reporting on this important topic, and for featuring UnhappyFranchisee.Com.


Contact UnhappyFranchisee.com

TAGS: Franchise, franchising, NPR, National Public Radio, WBEZ, Sean Kelly, UnhappyFranchisee.Com, International Franchise Association, Chip Mitchell, shannon Heffernan, wage theft, minimium wage debate

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