NFL and IFA Launch Franchising Boot Camp

IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira, Senior Vice President of Government Relations & Public Policy  Judith Thorman and Director of Political Affairs & Grassroots Advocacy Erica Fitzsimmons traveled to the National Football League’s headquarters Dec. 12 in New York to announce a partnership  between the IFA and the NFL to execute the first-ever NFL Franchising Boot Camp, an intensive program for approximately 20 current and former NFL players and their spouses who are interested in learning about the franchising industry.

The boot camp is scheduled for April 26-29, 2013 at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, named for Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and will be keynoted by Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, a former NFL receiver for the Baltimore Colts and franchisee himself, who built an empire of 800 restaurants from one hamburger stand.

Several high profile players such as Drew Brees, a Jimmy John’s franchisee; Peyton Manning, a Papa John’s franchisee; and Colt McCoy, who has just signed on with Dunkin’ Donuts as a franchisee; have become part of our great industry. This boot camp will provide the opportunity for more NFL athletes to learn about franchising.

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IFA hosts tele-town hall to support members with the information needed to cast an informed ballot on Election Day



Last week, IFA held a tele-town hall, sponsored by Franchise Payments Network with the Romney for President campaign surrogate Former SBA Administrator Hector Barreto as part of the 2012 Franchising Votes campaign which intends to support our IFA members with the information they need to cast an informed ballot on Election Day. As part of the campaign, the IFA believes it is important to hear directly from each of the Presidential campaigns about what their Administration would do to support the franchise business community in the coming years.  (Please note, IFA is still actively working to schedule a town hall call with the Obama for America campaign over the next two weeks).

The call started with IFA President & CEO Steve Caldeira who noted that “This is truly a critical election. If you haven’t yet, I encourage you to visit for all of the tools and resources you might need.” The policies from either Administration moving forward will have a direct impact on franchise businesses in the years to come. It is critically important that we are all well-informed as we head to the voting booth.

Former SBA Administrator stated that Governor Romney understands that many small businesses are hurting and need policies and regulations to start and grow their businesses especially as it relates to tax policy. They believe that “Governor Romney’s five point plan will get business back on track and create millions of new jobs.” In addition, Barreto noted that the Governor will create the right environment for small business and knows the importance of championing job creators and creating more tax certainty so that business owners can have the tools to continue to create jobs.

As it relates to small business lending, Administrator Barreto said that Governor Romney understands that  small businesses are really struggling to get the loans needed to start and grow their businesses and a Romney Administration would reengage the lending community to help better ensure that business owners are getting the capital they need. Administrator Barreto noted Governor Romney’s first-hand experience in growing businesses and creating new jobs.

Finally, Governor Romney would act to repeal and replace the recent health care legislation on his first day in office with common sense solutions. Administrator Barreto said that “Obamacare is not the right solution for our country, our economy and definitely not for our small businesses.”  IFA actively opposed Obamacare, in particular, IFA opposes the employer mandate in the legislation which could put 3.2 million franchise jobs at risk.

For the full recording of the tele-town hall call please go to:

IFA FRANCHISING VOTES CAMPAIGN: Which candidate would be favorable to franchising?



Welcome to Franchising Votes – the IFA’s new online voter education campaign that aims to ensure the franchise business community has the tools necessary to make an informed decision at the ballot box and get out to vote on November 6th. The below candidate comparison is the first in a series of information IFA will provide between now and Election Day to help keep you informed and get you and your employees and franchisees motivated to vote.  Below, you will find a comparison of President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney,  detailing where each stands on some of IFA’s key issues, taken either from the responses to a questionnaire IFA sent to each campaign or from the campaigns’ websites. We hope this document serves as a useful tool when making your decision on Election Day and encourage you to send this comparison to your employees, colleagues and friends in the franchise industry.  For more information please contact Erica Fitzsimmons, Director Political Affairs & Grassroots Advocacy at or at 202-662-0760. 

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IFA Video Contest Winner: Why does the franchise business community need to get out and vote this year?



In advance of this year’s Public Affairs Conference on September 10-11 in Washington, DC and the upcoming election season, IFA asked our members to create a video answering the following question:

Why does the franchise business community need to get out and vote this year?

In this important election year, we wanted IFA members to make their voices hear and tell us why elections matter and how policies impact their bottom lines.

The winning video was submitted by Greg Tanner, National Director – Franchising, from Aaron’s, Inc. and was shown at the Public Affairs Conference where nearly 450 IFA members from across the country came to Washington to learn more about issues of importance to the franchise business community and take those issues directly to their elected officials on Capitol Hill.

IFA members called on Congress to extend current tax rates as quickly as possible to avoid the fiscal cliff and create more certainty. On Tuesday, September 11, IFA members met with nearly 200 Congressional offices and held a Taste of Franchising to highlight some of our industry’s brands on Capitol Hill.

IFA members will be back in their states and districts in the coming weeks, urging employees and other members of the franchising and small business community, to get out and vote to support candidates who are supportive of the franchise industry’s issues.

To see the winning video please click here.

Win an iPad in the IFA Public Affairs Conference Video Contest

Calling All IFA Members!

In advance of this year’s Public Affairs Conference on September 10-11 in Washington, DC and the upcoming election season, we are holding a new video contest and we need your help! We are asking YOU to create a video, no longer than one minute, answering the following question:  Why does the franchise business community need to get out and vote this year?

Make your voice heard! Tell us why elections matter and how policies impact your bottom line!

To enter:
1. Upload the video to YouTube and tag your video as “Franchising Votes.” (If you don’t already have an account you will need to create an account. There are also instructions on how to upload a video to YouTube).

2. Then send your video web address or URL to so we can share your video on IFA’s YouTube page. You can also send us the video file in an e-mail. It’s that easy!

The winning video will be featured at the Public Affairs Conference and on the IFA website. In addition to being the 2012 voice of “franchising votes,” you will also win a new iPad! We hope you take this opportunity to make your voice heard! Please submit your video by Wednesday, September 5th.

Please don’t hesitate to contact Erica Fitzsimmons with any questions at
202-662-0760 or We look forward to seeing your videos!