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Coming of Age

We're not talking kid stuff--the booming children's market is serious business, and franchisees are reaping the rewards.

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This story appears in the August 2007 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The industry is aging beautifully, but there's one segment of it that stays forever young. Youthful, energetic, ever-growing and impulsive, the kids' market definitely reflects its target population.

While kids hold the key to our future, they also control their parents' purse strings. American families spend approximately $115.6 billion a year on their children for food, clothing, personal-care items, entertainment and reading materials, according to a 2006 report by Packaged Facts. This figure is expected to increase to $143 billion by 2010. Meanwhile, the buying power of kids themselves now tops $18 billion. Kids may be small in size, but spending by them, around them and for them represents a powerful market opportunity too big to be ignored.

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