Investment autopsies happen at

To support life, death must be studied.

WikiFranchise was created for the study franchise investments; to try to reduce failures through understanding. I jabber on about fleeting things here on FranchiseFool but WikiFranchise is what I’ve been up to this last decade or so.

Medicine advanced through the study of human and mammal physiology.

Pathology is a medical specialty which:

is the study and diagnosis of disease through examination of organs, tissues, bodily fluids, and whole bodies (autopsies).

Without studying many separate cases, very little independent information can be gathered to avoid future business failures. Patterns start to emerge and new discoveries can happen.

I worked in in both provincial psychiatric and acute care teaching hospitals in my career. I came to appreciate the value of classification, persistence and doing what you can to advance science in the service of people. I think the effect franchising has on families makes this work worthy. Not easy work, but necessary at least as a way of remembering.

As often happens in surveys, patterns emerged. I chose to categorize risky behavior (from an investor’s point of view) by describing them as best I could.  John was a great help and remains as a good friend.

While some of the the stories are not very pretty and could be viewed as negative, I think it’s better to know the possible business risks you’re facing before you sign control of your life savings away as a mom-and-pop franchise investor.

Where WikiFranchise goes from here will depend on what others think.

2 Responses to Investment autopsies happen at

  1. Carol Cross says: is a valuable tool that I hope is being utilized by those who are thinking about buying a franchise with the view that a franchise is a good and proven investment vehicle. An objective and unbiased view of franchising from the standpoint of articles and testimonies about franchising, as in Wikidfranchise is an excellent idea. But, of course, the negative articles can’t overcome the millions of articles, press releases, and stories in the media that push franchising as the American Dream or the Canadian Dream.

    Hopefully, all of those who research on the Internet will find the negatives and Franchise Fool, as I did, almost three years ago? However, you know, Les! that when human beings are looking for solutions to their problems, they are vulnerable to looking only for positives and not for negatives! How does one overcome the spector of all of the franchised businesses standing in the economy that provide an appearance that franchising is safe and successful?

    You know that your comments and my comments in the Search Engines where prospective franchisees might look for franchise fraud — churning –and regulation will perhaps warn some who are doing their research on the Internet and actually turn them off of the purchase. But, you know, also, that those who think they have found the solution will turn you and me off! This is the nature of things and “the powers that be” know this. They know that if our credibility can be undermined in the “middle of the road” sites like Blue Mau Mau that tend more to promote franchising that “nothing will really change” and perhaps this is the purpose of Blue Mau Mau? I noticed that Blue Mau Mau did not congratulate you or recognize the site as did the Wall Street Journal.

    I am blocked and censored from posting anywhere but here on your site and on “Unhappy Franchisee” and, additionally, I do make comments about franchising in the Business Week New Entrepreneur Blog that are not censored. I have wondered why you don’t post there with a hyper-link to your blog and I also have been writing articles (to educate) because of the good work of Ezine Articles who also don’t censor points of view. I don’t think these articles are viewed by great numbers of people but if they are only read by a few, maybe “word of mouth” and the seeming ability of “truth” to “out” will one day make a difference.

    You have devoted so much of your life and time to trying to educate the public about this ugly business model that encourages abuse and exploitation, and as you have told me when I am discouraged, “we can only do what we must do” and everything else is out of our hands.

    Keep up your good work! Articles in Google Search: Franchise Regulation Realities — Deception or Patriotism” –“Disadvantage of Buying a New Franchise for Prospective Franchisee” — “Franchise Disclosure Document — Beware of Red Herring” and “Buying a Franchise! The Great Franchise Hoax! A Business of Your Own?”


  2. Les Stewart says:


    I try not to let what other people do influence what I do. It’s tough but…hey…everyone’s got to dance to the drumbeat they hear.

    Sorry to hear about your continued censor problems. Please appreciate that those that try to silence voices, have their reputation affected. Maybe not immediately or directly, but there is a consequence to suppressing any human right. They’re call “universal” because they belong to everyone or else they belong to no one.

    Carry on, Carol: you cannot perhaps see the influence you have on people of conscience but, believe me, I see it every time I watch the goings-on at Blue MauMau.

    Voltaire said:

    I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: ‘O Lord, make my enemies ridiculous.‘ And God granted it.

    Anyone that opposes you, opposes what I believe in.



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