I have often said that even though Edible Arrangements has more than 1,300 locations and 800 franchisees around the world, we are really just a big family of small business owners.
And as we celebrate National Small Business Week, it provides a timely opportunity to reflect on the power that small businesses have across the country and around the world. I feel particularly honored to get to work with some of the best small business owners I know every day.
Having been an entrepreneur since my high school days, I can really relate to the struggles, hard work and fear that goes into creating a business. My small business journey, like that of many entrepreneurs, has not always been easy but I’ve found that it has always been rewarding. Especially because of where it has landed me today, in a position to offer guidance and mentorship to all the passionate Edible Arrangement franchisees as well as future generations of entrepreneurs I have been able to meet through the International Franchise Association’s NextGen In Franchising program.
And there should be no doubt about it. Edible Arrangements may be a global brand, but our franchisees are individual entrepreneurs running their own small businesses on a daily basis. Our franchisees ARE small business owners.
A common misconception when they people hear that a franchise concept is moving into their town is that it’s a large company moving in. And while being a part of a well-known brand certainly has its benefits, ultimately it is usually your friends, neighbors or fellow members of your community opening the business. Franchising is nothing more than a network of small business owners who work together to support each other with a common brand and products.
According to the Franchise Business Economic Outlook for 2017 from the International Franchise Association (IFA), the franchising industry significantly outpaced the US economy in 2016 and is expected to do so this year as well. Franchises are booming small businesses, not only on the national level but locally as well.
I’m proud that the 800 entrepreneurs in our more than 1,300 Edible Arrangements franchise locations employ more than 10,000 local residents in their communities. That’s a powerful number and powerful testament to the effect of small businesses.
Small businesses have created more than 8 million jobs since 1990, and now more than ever, the success rates for small businesses is rising. Now that small business week is here, let’s join together and celebrate the many different small businesses that drive the United States economy.
Make sure to go out and support your local small businesses, and consider enjoying a sweet treat from your local Edible Arrangements, all while boosting your local and the national economy.