The debut of Franchise Expo South in Houston set a record for the largest number of attendees and exhibitors in the show’s eight-year history. Held from February 6–8 at the Reliant Center, the event attracted nearly 11,000 visitors who had the opportunity to meet with more than 200 franchisors face-to-face to discuss new franchise opportunities while examining the latest issues affecting the industry. Though the majority of visitors were from the greater Houston area, potential franchisees came from 38 states and 18 countries.

“We were extremely pleased with the record-breaking turnout at the first Franchise Expo South in Houston,” says Tom Portesy, president of MFV Expositions, producers of Franchise Expo South. “Our decision to move the Expo to Houston was a strategic decision based on the region’s growing economy and because Houston is one of the best cities in the country for small business. We look forward to many more successful years in the city.”

Franchise Expo South offered visitors the unique opportunity to discover which types of franchise businesses match their needs. The tradeshow floor highlighted hundreds of top brands across all industries including America’s Taco Shop, Burger 21, Capriotti’s, Zaxby’s, Caring Senior Service, CruiseOne, Crunch Fitness, and Ready Decks, among others.

“The first Franchise Expo South in Houston was one of the busiest trade shows I have attended in my 25-year career in franchising,” says Brian Wieters, vice president of franchise recruitment for Pillar To Post Inc. “We were very impressed with the number of qualified buyers who were in attendance and expect to close three new franchise deals as a result of the show. I am sure many exhibitors would agree that the show’s move to Texas has definitely paid off.”

Sponsored by the International Franchise Association, Franchise Expo South also featured over 50 educational seminars and conferences, several of which were approved for Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) accreditation. These public sessions discussed the latest issues affecting the industry and further defined the impact that franchising has on both new and existing businesses.

Denise Lee Yohn: QSR's Marketing Guru, News