7-Eleven Continues Franchise Focus

7-Eleven Inc. said it is continuing its aggressive plan to convert the vast majority of its company-operated stores into franchised operations in the U.S. by 2012.

The conversion of company-operated stores in some markets began in 2006, and approximately 4,100, or 75%, of more than 5,600 7-eleven stores in the U.S. are now franchised.

Existing 7-Eleven store managers were first invited to apply for a 7-Eleven franchise and many have taken advantage of the opportunity. The offer is now available to the public.

"The power of a 7-Eleven franchise over other convenience store franchise options is that it is one of the most recognizable and strongest trademarks and brand names in the world," said Dennis Lane, 34-year 7-Eleven store franchisee and chairman of the National Coalition of Associations of 7-Eleven stores. "7-Eleven originated the convenience store concept, and has the infrastructure, tools, technical support and everything necessary to support the franchisee."

"7-Eleven’s movement to convert its company-operated stores offers an opportunity for people in the community to franchise their own business using an established, successful system supported by a world-class retailer," said Desi Desormeaux, 7-Eleven franchise sales manager for Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland and North Carolina.

7-Eleven provides the land, building, equipment and a turnkey operation for its franchisees. The average up-front, total investment for a 7-Eleven franchise is between $175,000 and $250,000, although this amount may vary significantly by store and region of the country.

The investment is based on the store’s actual sales history and includes the store’s inventory, supplies, business licenses, permits, bonds, cash register fund as well as a franchise fee, the amount of which may vary depending on the store’s location.

Unlike other franchise models that take a percent of sales, 7-Eleven shares in the store’s merchandise gross profits.

Separately, 7-Eleven is also expanding through its Business Conversion Program (BCP), where independent business owners interested in converting their retail operation to a 7-Eleven store can apply to qualify.

BCP provides many similar benefits as 7-Eleven’s traditional, individual-store franchise model, while allowing an independent store operator with at least 1,800 square feet of selling space the opportunity to own or lease his store site. Upon agreement, 7-Eleven installs proprietary equipment and assists in converting the store to a 7-Eleven-branded location.

7-Eleven operates, franchises or licenses more than 7,500 7-Eleven stores in North America, while globally the company operates, franchises or licenses more than 34,800 stores in 17 countries.

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