Franchise Explosion

Rising Stars

What are the hottest franchises going to be offering? Following are our picks for 1996. And although you may have seen these ideas around in some form or another, we give you tips on the newest ideas that should keep these concepts at the top.

Bagels: They may be old news in some cities, but they're still selling strong-and there are plenty of markets they haven't yet penetrated. One key to success is offering more than just breakfast. Look for a franchise that keeps sales sizzling all day long with lunch offerings as well.

Pretzels: Here's something to twist and shout about: Auntie Anne's, a soft pretzel franchisor in Gap, Pennsylvania, estimates a 1995 sales increase of 40 percent over 1994. Soft pretzels are taking the nation by storm, and the market is far from saturated. With consumers hungry for these low-fat treats, pretzel franchisors should enjoy growth far into the future. The latest twist: pretzels in a variety of shapes and flavors.

Specialized staffing: Franchises that offer temps with a difference are staffing their way to success. In addition to traditional office workers, companies that supply specialized employees such as accountants, lawyers and even physicians are in demand. An up-and-coming trend: companies that can provide blue-collar temps such as manufacturing and factory workers.

Home health care: Insurance companies are looking for ways to cut costs-and home health-care franchises seem to have found the answer. Providing care for people with disabilities, newborns and their mothers and others who need medical care but don't need to be in a hospital setting, home health-care agencies are taking care of business. And with increasing numbers of the nation's population entering their golden years in the next decade, senior care franchises will be an especially hot segment of this market.

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This article was originally published in the January 1996 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Franchise Explosion.

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