A random sampling of some this week's franchise announcements shows that, while global agreements are becoming more popular, geographic gaps still exist.
Suppliers franchise distributors on a region-by-region basis to avoid over-distribution of their products and minimize conflict within their sales channels. The problem with this practice is that a distributor that serves a global customer may be authorized to sell a product in North America but not in China. Exceptions are often granted, but there's always a lot of paperwork involved.
Suppliers increasingly are filling in those gaps by expanding existing distribution agreements into multiple regions. This practice helps both suppliers and distributors better serve customers and moves the industry another step toward true globalization.