Five Guys

Ties That Bind

Andrew Stern’s New York City–based company, Five Points Partners, owns franchises of several brands, including Dunkin’ Donuts, Subway, and Five Guys Burgers and Fries. After seven years as a franchisee under different brands, Stern knows the difference between a strong and productive relationship among franchisees and franchisor and a bad one.

One of Stern’s telltale signs of a great franchisor is the level of support offered by the brand—even during an economic slump when revenues and resources are low.

The Five Guys Mistake

We’re in a really huge shift in the way we do second locations, and customers’ particular tastes have changed. You’re really seeing the customers’ tastes be that if he doesn’t want to go to the Ruby Tuesday, which is the same everywhere, or even the McDonald’s, the customer’s tastes are, “I want my uniqueness, I want my neighborhood feel, I want something special.” That’s why you’re seeing some real struggle with restaurants trying to go out and duplicate what they had and it not being successful. You also don’t want to duplicate exactly because it’s really hard to do.

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