It came to mean a privilege or right, and is still in use to refer to the right to vote, as in 'the franchise was extended to women only in the 20th century'. In a business sense, it is first recorded in Britain in 1959, when a man was given the right to run a barber's shop in a hotel. Since the '60s, though, it has meant an agreement whereby a company allows another firm to sell its products or services in exchange for fees or royalty payments. Some trace the system to the Middle Ages, when the church licensed tax collectors to gather tithes on its behalf, or to the late 19th century, when Coca-Cola founder John S Pemberton licensed others to bottle and sell his product. In our day, franchising is a global phenomenon, especially in fast food. The word has taken on a sinister air, though, with observers describing Al-Qaeda's semi-autonomous offshoots around the world as its 'franchises'.
Forget what the chief exec says. Take a look around if you want to know your real 'core values'.
Like closed sales and ROI, company culture is a reliable predictor of successful business performance. And like any revenue driver, it should be analysed and developed.
LONG READ: Regulation alone isn't sufficient to control corporate excess, say academics Rob Goffee, Gareth Jones and Roger Steare.
UPDATE: Melrose ups the ante on GKN hostile takeover bid.
The Dexters CEO has seen his company grow despite a challenging market.
Be yourself? It's not quite so simple, says Professor Margarita Mayo.