Franchising offers solution to Ghana’s unemployment
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In the quest to address the high unemployment level in the country, Small Scale and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have been urged to adopt franchising which has been identified as a major job creation tool.

Thousands of jobs have been created through franchising especially in the petroleum and food industries in Ghana, but experts indicate that there are vast job creation opportunities in other sectors.

In the last five years, Voltic Ghana Limited alone, through 37 franchises for its sachet water production, has created over 4,000 jobs, with more room for enhancement.

Franchising is when a more prominent or successful company allows a new and smaller entrant to use its established identity to operate and produce its standard brand for a fee.

At a workshop in Accra for financial journalists to discuss the essentials of franchising in Ghana, experts indicated the need for Ghanaian entrepreneurs to explore the potentials of franchising.

The workshop, which was organised through a partnership between the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) and Voltic Ghana Limited, was aimed at creating awareness about the socio-economic benefits of franchising.

Mr. Kwame Jantua, a legal practitioner and business operator, in a presentation on the legal framework for franchising in Ghana, observed that although franchising is not very common in Ghana except in the downstream oil and gas industry, there are some small companies that collaborate with bigger companies to provide products and services to the general public in the form of franchising.

However, there are no specific regulations to govern franchising in Ghana except the regulations on contracts that are used to guide franchising arrangements.

Franchising comes with challenges to which research indicates that 80 percent of new SMEs fail in the third year of operation because of inadequate knowledge in the chosen field of operations, lack of conformity to standard operating procedures, inexperience and lack of training, fraud and standardisation.

Particular opportunities in job creation in Ghana can be addressed through franchising deals with pharmaceutical companies like Ernest Chemist, Kinapharma, Danadams and other areas in the hospitality, services, construction, financial and industries.

Raymond Gbetivi, Sales and Marketing Manager at Voltic Ghana, said the initiative by his company to franchise its sachet water brand was yielding tremendous results, including over 4,000 direct jobs and thousands of indirect jobs.

“Franchising is the way to go for many SMEs,” he said, adding that the company’s franchise rights have led to the expansion of most of the franchises.

By Nii Adotey/adrdaily.com

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