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Press Release
: : 1 April, 2004


Fiducial, an international provider of professional outsourcing services for small businesses and individuals, reports that after attending the 44th Annual International Franchise Association Franchise Convention in Las Vegas earlier last month, the company remains ahead of the franchise pack thanks to its technological advances and proprietary systems while the state of franchising appears as strong as ever.

Ranked number one among the top new franchises of 2004 by Entrepreneur magazine, Fiducial has gained steady ground as a franchise because more end users, clients and franchise candidates understand its concept as a one-stop shop for small business owners for all their back office needs. Franchise hopefuls believe Fiducial is a visionary leading the pack as a franchisor in its Business Financial Services category and that fact was validated at the IFA convention which enjoyed its highest turnout ever.

Franchisors attending the four-day event networked with their peers to gauge how they measured up with industry standards in terms of recruitment, operations and staffing. Although Fiducial is still fairly new on the franchise scene, Howard Margolis, Director of Field Operations and Development, noted that there’s not many things the company is doing that the industry would find counteractive.

“From a technology standpoint-with our ESolutions and web-based applications-what we’re bringing to franchisees as a proprietary system is probably ahead of where most of the franchisors are because of our resources,” he said.

Highlights from the convention included how the industry has matured over the years in the way franchisors recruit franchisees with franchisors no longer selling franchises but awarding them. Franchisors are looking for quality people and understand the importance of bringing in people where the system is right for them and have tightened their selection requirements accordingly.

Greater emphasis is being placed on understanding how important it is for franchisor-franchisee relationships to set the tone in the beginning so each party have the same level of understanding. If this issue is not addressed, the parties will be dedicating a lot of resources to human resources and financial resources to correct that relationship which takes them away from their philosophical and visionary goals.

Increased attention is also being focused on the concept of national accounts and how they are becoming more readily recognized by franchisors as bringing value added to their business.

“This can provide national account assistance from products to services like ours which allows their franchises to focus on their core services,” Margolis said. “What’s good about that-one franchisor assisting another-is you have a great understanding of the dynamics of what takes place in a franchise.”

Prospective franchisees, on average, will experience an entrepreneurial window about once or twice in a lifetime and they will either grab it or not. Franchising has existed through all stages of the economy. Although there’s a larger pool of candidates available now, Margolis says, that the individual “still has to have the entrepreneurial spirit and willingness to take a risk.”

Fiducial’s franchising efforts include providing client opportunities through its call center initiatives and an outside sales program. Call center’s these days cannot be a stand alone so they must be integrated with other marketing activities because it’s harder to reach businesses that have caller identification and other screening devices.

Since potential clients have less time to speak to vendors, outside sales efforts must adapt by reaching the end user through direct mail, follow up calls and cold calling. Outside sales are more successful when followed by direct mail, networking and asking for referrals by a team of salesmen who knock on about 100 doors a week.

Whether it’s a phone call or a knock on the door, the bottom line for small businesses contacted by Fiducial representatives is finding out how the end user can use the services and how these can benefit them. Fiducial can show entrepreneurs how to stay profitable and allow them to dedicate energies to growing their business instead of getting bogged down with administrative tasks that take them away from what they do best.

Added Margolis, “We’re looking for opportunities. There’s no other way to do it. Technology will never replace salesmen because there’s nothing like face-to-face.”

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Established in Europe in 1970, Fiducial is currently the ninth largest accounting firm in the U.S. and the thirteenth largest in the world. Privately held with revenues exceeding $600 million, Fiducial has over 6,500 employees worldwide serving 185,000 clients. U.S. operations are headquartered in New York City and rely on its Technical and Administrative Support Center (TASC) in Columbia, Maryland for support.

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