Millions of dollars of Maine’s economy and thousands of Maine jobs are on the line.

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( — January 27, 2014) Portland, MA — 


Millions of dollars of Maine’s economy and thousands of Maine jobs are on the line. 


The suits and shiny shoes are coming. International Franchise Association (IFA) lawyers and lobbyists by the dozen are swarming into Portland from Washington, D.C. to attempt to block the LD 1458 The Maine Small Business Investment Protection Act! 


Get the inside story. Proponents of the bill, The Maine Franchise Owners Association, representing franchise owners and suppliers throughout the State of Maine, encourage you to tell it.  This is an election year and bipartisan issue.


It all comes to a head in hearing Room 208 at the Maine State House in Tuesday, January 28th starting at 1:00 pm.  Please report on this historic legislation.


The act has been reduced to “5 Principles” of protections for Maine franchise owners. These protections that every other business in takes for granted, but have been stricken from franchise agreements over the last 15-20 years.


Due to the uneven contract terrain, the number of franchised businesses in Maine have been decreasing over the last 10 years. From a high of approximately 4200 to a current estimated number of 3400. One of the main reasons is that franchise agreements have become more and more one sided and a number of franchise brands have become notorious for bleeding franchise owners dry.


The worst examples of these are: Quiznos (over 20 Mainers lost over $6 million dollars investing in Quiznos), Cold Stone Creamery, and the UPS Store.

Dunkin Donuts under previous management had over 350 lawsuits against franchise owners as little as 5 years ago. Estimates are that Dunkin’ Donuts intentionally extracted over $100 million in franchise owner equity from 1998-2009.


There are 18 states with franchise relationship laws, 3 more states have bills filed. An additional 6 states are considering new legislation. The tide is turning and those that have taking advantage of franchisees over the years are running scared.


On a similar note –


The Maine Franchise Owners Association will be hosting its first annual Franchise Business Day and Legislative Meet & Greet at the Senator Inn, 284 Western Avenue, Augusta, ME 04330  this Wednesday January 29th from 1:00 pm to 7:00 pm.


The press is encouraged to join the business community for this event.

There will be an impressive and informative line up of speakers and presentations.  George Gervais, Commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development, will present “2014 Outlook for Economic and Community Development in Maine!”  Ed Feibel, Eaton Peabody, Attorneys at Law, will provide a “Timely Update on the Mandated Affordable Care Act and other Approved Benefit Programs”.  Featured Speaker: Keith Miller, Subway Franchisee, Chairman of the Coalition of Franchisee Associations will present  “Why the Voices of Franchisees are Starting to be Heard” The Maine Department of Labor will provide an “Employer Legal Compliance Workshop”, led by Jeanne Paquette, Commissioner of Labor, Annette Tibbetts MBA CPA, Field Advisor and Examiner, and Scott Cotnoir, Chief Labor and Safety Inspector.  Maine Franchise Owners will present a Franchise Ownership Workshop: “Universal Franchisee Bill of Rights! Why, How, and Who Wrote it and What it Means for You!”


The Legislators Meet & Greet from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm will divide the five Distinct Maine Market Areas so that legislators will have streamlined access to their constituents.  Complimentary hors d’oveures and refreshments will be served.


“This is a historic event and a rallying point from Maine-based franchise owners,” noted Jim Coen, Executive Director of Maine Franchise Owners Association.  He added, “The First Annual Maine Franchise Owners Franchise Business Day and Legislators Meet & Greet provides a launching point for Maine franchise owners to share common goals and resources and to connect directly with legislators who impact their communities and their opportunity for economic growth.”

Millions of dollars of Maine’s economy and thousands of Maine jobs are on the line.