WASHINGTON, May 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Franchise Association (IFA) Foundation announced today it is accepting applications for its annual NextGen in Franchising Global Competition, a worldwide contest that engages millennial entrepreneurs seeking to grow their businesses through the franchise model, and the only business incubator in the world focused on franchising. Since the inception of the NextGen in Franchising Global Competition, nearly 2,000 millennial entrepreneurs from more than 75 countries have applied. Applications will be open through Aug. 31, 2018 at www.NextGenFranchising.org.
"The NextGen in Franchising competition is truly a one-of-a-kind program that continues to evolve year after year as we identify business concepts worldwide that have the potential to grow through franchising," said David McKinnon, CFE, 2nd vice chair of the IFA Foundation and chair of the NextGen in Franchising Committee. "Being the only competition and business incubator tailored to help millennial business owners grow their concepts through franchising, NextGen provides unparalleled resources and access to seasoned leaders in the industry. We established the competition to not only drive the success of the next generation of franchisors, but also to fuel the growth of the overall franchising community. Each year we are blown away by the quality of applications we receive and are extremely excited to learn about the emerging businesses that are ready to take the next step in 2019. "
The NextGen in Franchising Global Competition is open to companies that have been operating for 1-5 years, have the potential to scale through franchising, and with founders ages 21-35.* Twenty winners will receive a trip to the IFA's 59th Annual Convention in Las Vegas from Feb. 24-27, 2019; a spot at the NextGen in Franchising Summit, a two-day educational and networking program for next generation entrepreneurs at the IFA Annual Convention; an accelerator program with industry leaders and CEOs; an opportunity to participate in the final round of the NextGen in Franchising Global Competition for a chance to win a monetary investment to help grow their business; and opportunities to network with leading franchisors, franchisees, and suppliers, as well as other young entrepreneurs.
Winners of the 2018 NextGen in Franchising competition had the opportunity to present their business concepts to Shark Tank star Daymond John who led a panel of judges for the final round of the Global Competition in Phoenix, Arizona. The 2018 NextGen in Franchising Global Competition winners hailed from eight countries around the world, including the United States, Canada, the Philippines, Australia, Kenya, Nicaragua, Uganda and Hungary. Clean Juice, founded by husband-and-wife team Landon and Kat Eckles, was named the 2018 grand prize winner.
"My husband and I are indebted to the resources and ongoing support we have received since competing at the NextGen in Franchising competition earlier this year," said Kat Eckles. "We've stayed in touch with many of the judges and have formed strong mentor/mentee relationships which have already positioned our company to have the bandwidth needed to grow Clean Juice rapidly through franchising. We highly encourage entrepreneurs to apply to this incredible program."
The NextGen in Franchising program is made possible due to the generosity of its donors and sponsors, which include David McKinnon, the founding sponsor; the Stewart & Jane Bainum Fund; Lawrence "Doc" Cohen, Doc & Associates; Choice Hotels Foundation; J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation; Tariq Farid, Edible Arrangements; Charlie Chase, FirstService Brands; Aziz Hashim, NRD Holdings; Joe Bourdow, Valpak; the Frederick A. DeLuca Foundation/Subway; Tony Valle, ELM Perform; Dave Mortensen, Anytime Fitness; and Melanie Bergeron, Two Men & A Truck Intl.
About the IFA Foundation
Celebrating 35 years of education, research and excellence, the International Franchise Association (IFA) Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization and supported through the generous contributions of IFA members and others. The Foundation's mission is to advance franchising and the free enterprise system by increasing the knowledge and professional standards of all members of the franchising community; educating the next generation of franchise practitioners; increasing recognition of franchising's key role in the free enterprise system; and providing comprehensive information and research about important developments and trends in franchising.
About the International Franchise Association
The International Franchise Association is the world's oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. IFA works through its government relations and public policy, media relations and educational programs to protect, enhance and promote franchising and the more than 745,000 franchise establishments that support nearly 7.9 million direct jobs, $713.2billion of economic output for the U.S. economy and 3 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). IFA members include franchise companies in over 300 different business format categories, individual franchisees and companies that support the industry in marketing, law, technology and business development.
* Age at time of application; company must have been founded after April 2013.
SOURCE International Franchise Association