New AAFD Chapters Form to Represent Franchisee Interest in Light of Franchisee and Franchisor Relationship Crisis   

SAN DIEGO, OCTOBER 2, 2020 – The American Association of Franchisees and Dealers (AAFD) announced today the formation of eleven new independent franchise associations, organized as chapters of the AAFD, since the beginning of 2020. Each chapter intends to leverage the combined voices of all its members to establish an environment of collaboration between franchisees and franchisors. The eleven new chapters represent franchisees from: BurgerIM,Anytime Fitness, Jimboy’s Tacos, Honor Yoga, Fast-Fix Jewelry Watch & Repairs, Basecamp, Saladworks, Batteries Plus Bulbs, Mathnasium, The Good Feet and Title Boxing Club.  

“We are incredibly excited to welcome these eleven chapters under the AAFD’s tent ofTotal Quality Franchising,” said Robert Purvin, Chairman of the AAFD. “These new chapters represent hundreds of franchises across the country and the world from well-known brands. As these chapters grow, their voices will reverberate. With the help of the AAFD, I believe these chapters will be able to create real and meaningful change within their franchise system to establish a more collaborative and fair culture.”   

In January, the AAFD announced the formation of the BurgerIM Chapter in the wake of bombshell revelations (reported on January 20th in Restaurant Business Online, “The BurgerIM Disaster”) of hundreds of franchisees not receiving promised services and support, and serious allegations of fraud, mismanagement, and misappropriation of franchisee funds. The new chapter was formed by concerned franchise operators after multiple reports of misappropriation of funds, a large number of sold franchises that are not being developed, lack of franchisee support, large vendor kickbacks to the franchisor, and reports of company vendors and employees not being paid.   

“When Covid-19 began wreaking havoc on businesses across America in late February, the AAFD was preparing itself for the worst, as we anticipated a loss of members due to businesses closing. However, early on, the pandemic started shining a light on the issues franchisee’s face every day, but now those issues are greatly intensified. Franchisees are in crisis and the need to come together as one voice now more than ever presents the best opportunity for survival,” saidPurvin.  

The AAFD acts as a catalyst in the franchisee chapter formation process by providing critical support and strategic coaching, helping franchisees build a leadership structure, and providing tools to support an effective franchisee association in a simple and unique cost-effective vehicle to launch and sustain long term viability. The AAFD helps its chapters build effective leadership, define goals and objectives, build a compelling membership purpose, and open a constructive dialogue with their franchisor management team.