DALLAS -- Between now and June 30, 7-Eleven Inc. will waive the franchise fee on a select number of its U.S. stores available for franchise, a savings of up to $80,000. 7-Eleven president and CEO Joe DePinto announced the Zero Franchise Fee Initiative at last week's 7-Eleven Experience in Las Vegas, the company's annual franchisee convention.
While the more than 200 available stores are located in cities across the country, many of the Zero Franchising Fee opportunities are in markets like Charlotte, N.C., where 7-Eleven has acquired a significant number of stores.
Over the last four years, 7-Eleven has grown its store base by more than 1,300 units. Now that it has established a 7-Eleven customer base at these locations, the company is looking to transition these stores to franchise operations.
Other cities where specific Zero Franchise Fee stores are available include Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas; Manhattan, N.Y.; Baltimore; Richmond, Va.; Orlando, Fla.; Portland, Ore.; and Jacksonville, Fla. These stores typically have lower sales volume compared to the national average.
The convenience-store retailer is offering these stores to qualified, prospective franchisees as well as existing 7-Eleven franchisees who want to grow their retail business by adding 7-Eleven stores. Prospective franchisees for these Zero Franchise Fee stores will undergo the standard 7-Eleven franchise approval process.
"These locations offer would-be entrepreneurs a chance to go into business for themselves without the expense of the one-time franchise fee," said Greg Franks, vice president of franchising systems. "With the Zero Franchise Fee Initiative, we opted to waive the fee on these specific stores to allow the new owner a chance to build his or her customer base and business, while backed by our proprietary systems, processes and ongoing support.
He added, "This limited-time offering presents a terrific opportunity for individuals to franchise their own business with a major franchise brand for no initial franchising fee."
Basic 7-Eleven franchisee qualifications include being 21 years or older, a permanent U.S. resident, having excellent credit and $50,000 in liquid assets. Prospective franchise owners will still be responsible for the costs of licensing, permits and the initial down payment on inventory, totaling approximately $30,000.
7-Eleven is franchising its stores in the U.S. and expanding through organic growth, acquisitions and its Business Conversion Program.
Recognized by numerous business publications as one of the best franchise opportunities in the U.S., 7-Eleven offers its franchise-owners the strength of its world-renowned brand and a turnkey operation. After extensive training, 7-Eleven franchisees open their doors with a fully equipped and stocked store with intuitive retail technology, merchandising and advertising support, national and private-brand products and some of the world's most recognizable brands like Slurpee and Big Gulp drinks.
Because the stores qualifying as Zero Franchise Fee opportunities are considered low volume, they may qualify for additional, limited-time financial support, the company said.
In April, it will announce the winner of Operation: Take Command, the company's first convenience store franchise giveaway contest targeted exclusively to U.S. military veterans.
Based in Dallas, 7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses 10,500 7-Eleven convenience stores in North America. Globally, there are some 55,000 7-Eleven stores in 16 countries. During 2013, 7-Eleven stores generated total worldwide sales close to $84.5 billion.