Sign franchise on the anvil

 What is a franchise? It is a legal and commercial relationship between the owner of a trademark, service mark, trade name, or advertising symbol and an individual or group wishing to use that identification in a business. Each franchise business has been authorized by a parent company, or franchisor, to sell their goods and/or services either in a retail space or a designated geographical area.

Today, franchising has evolved to be the largest and most popular business model in the world to build, introduce and export businesses of all kinds. Perhaps the very first franchises in the world came from the United States and they were mostly food-based concepts such as McDonalds and Kentucky Fried Chicken. Today, there are over 5,000 business concepts and the fastest growing concepts in the world are “business to business” concepts such as SIGN-A-RAMA franchise system for sign businesses. Franchises are designed in such a way that they can be managed by anyone who wish to own and manage their own business but want the security and stability of being with a well-known and respected organisation that provides excellent support and ongoing training so they can grow their business on regular basis. This is precisely what SIGN-ARAMA provides to its franchisees. Today, their franchise brand has grown into almost 50 different countries worldwide.

SIGN-A-RAMA has now focused its attention on the Indian market and will be introducing the franchise for the very first time at the New Delhi franchise show to be held in March, 2007. Tony Foley, international director, SIGN-A-RAMA will be a guest speaker at this event. He will also address the individuals who are interested in learning more about a master license opportunity. Initially, the company plans to offer three separate “regional” master licenses, for the north, the central and the south.

Tracing the history of SIGN-ARAMA, S&G found that established in 1985, it is a dream project of Raymond Titus who is the president and founder of the company. Ray’s father Roy Titus was instrumental in building wellknown quick printing franchise, MINUTEMAN PRESS in 1975, which today has about 1,000 franchise locations in six countries. The father and son duo were looking to start up another successful franchise concept, which led them to research the sign industry in the United States in 1984. What they found was that the industry was made of craftspeople and small sign businesses, which were operating from their homes or garages, or in some cases, from small facilities in industrial parks. On the other end of the sign industry were the large commercial companies that focused on the larger national companies, catering mostly to electrical signage such as large channel letters, box signs and metal letters of all types and the installation on buildings. What Ray and Roy noticed was that these sign companies were ignoring the small to medium size businesses and hence they assigned their signage jobs to local craftsman, with no standardisation in quality and pricing. They also noticed that need for signage is not seasonal but year round. After conducting careful research into the US sign industry, they felt that there certainly was much room for improvement in how signs are being produced and the service offered in terms of timely delivery, etc.

Since there was no other franchise in the sign industry, Ray and Roy opened the first SIGNA- RAMA flagship store in Long Island, New York and tested the concept for over one year to ensure its success. Ray ran this first store himself to gain hands on experience so that he could pass this knowledge along to others. This first flagship location proved to be highly successful and so the company began to offer franchises to the public in November 1987. At that time, the goal of the company was to just offer franchises in the North American market place. However, with the introduction of the new and exciting franchise concept on the Internet in 1990s, the company began to receive franchising requests from all over the world and SIGN-A-RAMA became a global brand.

 Tony Foley joined SIGN-A-RAMA as the company’s international director to lead the system forward in specific global markets. He was instrumental in offering “master development licenses” to qualified individuals for targeted markets. In the last ten years, SIGN-A-RAMA has awarded master licenses to countries such as Australia, South Africa, China, France, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Albania, Romania, Ireland, Nigeria, Tanzania, Guatemala, Thailand and Korea to name just a few and they are now in close to 50 countries making SIGN-A-RAMA the world’s largest sign franchise system with almost 900 store locations.

The need for good service and quality in the sign industry is universal and India is no exception. So, here comes SIGN-A-RAMA, which has been built on the foundation of providing extraordinary service, superior quality, at affordable prices.

To learn more about the exclusive master licenses, contact : Tony Foley, United Franchise Group, World Headquarters, West Palm Beach, Florida USA, Tel: 561-868-1358, mobile: 561-262-0591, email: tfoley@worldfranchisors.com or visit www.unitedfranchisegroup.com
For more information on out-ofhome airport advertising, contact Alexandra Walsh at 301-523-3318 awalsh@oaaa.org or Heidi Kershaw at 202-833-5566 hkershaw@oaaa.org.

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