VetFran: Polishing a Turd

July 8, 2008

This colourful phrase was explained to me by my franchise lawyer as such:

When an attorney has a loser of a case, his job to put it’s best foot forward. Your job is to “polish a turd”.

All experienced judges, lawyers, even legal secretaries know it is a loser of a case but, hey, that’s the business side of running a law practice.

In this case, the VetFran program may be used to lure ex-military into a dead franchise industry. For the latest breathless media article see Veterans have edge in franchising effort.

While I have tremendous respect for the individuals within the military, I not believe success in the military will automatically translate into success within a dying industry. My experience and training would, in fact, predict the very opposite.

But prudence seldom gets in the way of selling franchises. Let VetFran speak for itself:

It is because the community of franchising wishes to honor those who have so bravely served our country that a special program called VetFran was created.

Okay…so this is primarily an humanitarian effort, is it?

So who are the players in this altruistic initiative?

  • 200 U.S. franchisors (discounts on franchise purchases),
  • International Franchise Association (U.S. franchise trade association),
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs,
  • Veterans Corporation (?), and
  • U.S. Small Business Administration (Hurricane Katrina response).

Time will tell of course if this is just another way of Trapping the Trusting. Interim proof will be available if many deals fall apart when:

  • the ex-military spouses refuse to co-sign on any franchise debt or contract.

You’ve earned your meager pensions. Protect your own family as cope with navigating onto civvy street.

Don’t become trapped in SBA debts pedaled by an industry desperate to replace exiting sharecroppers.


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