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Let the Franchise Awards Season Begin!

Franchise Awards 2015

The Oscars, the BAFTAs, even the Eurovision…this is the time of year when everyone starts to talk about winning prizes, and the franchise awards in Ireland and the UK are now officially open for entries.

These awards are presented by national franchise associations to winners who have been scrutinised by a panel of experienced judges about factors such as how old the franchise is, how innovative it has been, its annual turnover, its growth rate, and its customer services. 

Award ceremonies are black-tie dinners and formal gala events attended by the media, significant members of the franchise industry, and government representatives. Finalists and winners benefit from excellent PR as their accomplishments are brought to everyone's notice and applauded. This leads to the brand receiving greater attention from potential franchisees.

Franchise Awards in Ireland

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Irish Franchise Awards. Originally there were just two prizes to be won, but this has increased over the years and now there are 13 awards covering franchisors and franchisees alike. There is special recognition for franchises that originated in Ireland, and for those that are 'emerging' or new to the industry. The categories include:

  • Franchise of the Year – one for retail, one for service.
  • Franchisee of the Year – one for retail, one for service.
  • Best Emerging Franchise – one for retail, one for service. This is open to franchisors who have established a new Irish franchise system in the last three years. 
  • Best Newcomer 
  • Best Indigenous Irish Franchise
  • Most Innovative Marketing Award
  • Outstanding Growth Award
  • Best Franchise System and Business Practice 
  • Franchise Woman of the Year
  • Best Irish Franchise Trading Internationally

The online entry form can be filled out on the Irish Franchise Association's website, and entries must be made by 5pm on 20 February 2015. Entries may be submitted in more than one category.

Finalists will be announced at the beginning of March, and the award ceremony will take place on 27 March at the Clyde Court Hotel, Dublin 4.

Franchise Awards in the UK

bfa HSBC Franchise Awards 2015

The British Franchise Association (bfa) does not cover the complete industry in one ceremony, but instead separates it into two events – the franchisor awards, and the franchisee awards. The latter are not bestowed until later in the year (usually October) so we shall focus on the first: the bfa HSBC Franchisor of the Year Awards 2015.

Entrants for these may have a franchise of any size, any age, and from any sector, unless the award category title specifies otherwise. The five categories are:

  • bfa HSBC Franchisor of the Year Award – the ultimate honour, won in 2014 by Autosmart.
  • Emerging Franchisor of the Year – candidates must have been franchising for five years or less.
  • Franchisee Recruitment Award
  • Award for Innovation
  • Award for Customer Focus

All entries have to be submitted by 5pm on 27 March, and information regarding the entry process is on the bfa website. Finalists are required to attend an interview in May, where they will make a 15 minute presentation in front of a panel of judges, before participating in a 15 minute question and answer session. The Awards Dinner will take place on Thursday 25 June at the ICC, Birmingham.

Franchise Direct wishes all applicants the very best of luck.

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