I started looking closely into franchising in 1998.
One of my first big system investigations was Mail Boxes Etc., MBE. Since then, that system has morphed into The UPS Store brand and can be followed on Blue MauMau’s thread called The UPS Store, Tales of Gore.
The photograph above is of the president of MBE Canada Michael Martino. He was chairman of the Canadian Franchise Association, CFA and spoke at the International Franchise Association’s, IFA 46th annual convention in 2006.
In December 1998, Martino appeared as a part of an article by John Lorinc in Canada’s monthly national business magazine (The Report on Business). Lorinc, an award-winning journalist, wrote a very interesting 1995 book called OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS: The Truth About Canada’s Franchise Industry which is still available on used book websites. I recommend picking it up.
The accompanying article was called The Sure Thing: Peter Thomas thought he’d bought into a can’t-miss franchise. That was $170,000 ago.
Here is a pdf of the article, courtesy of my Information Sharing Project archive.
Doug Forster took the photograph. We both agreed that franchise executives, as a general rule, should not allow themselves to be posed behind bars.
- Especially when you read the contents of the article.
Peter and I were sitting beside each other in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario when our first franchise law was passed in 2000.
I sometimes wonder what happened to Peter and to Mr. Martino over the last 10 years.
UPDATE: A direct link to Lorinc’s article is now available on WikiFranchise.org. I’ve also lost touch with Peter since the Ontario franchise law was passed. Hope he is well.