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Picture This Independent framing retailers are offered a safety net.

By Victoria Neal

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

After 24 years operating as independent framing retailers, Chrisand Nancy McKenna decided they needed more support behind them.Their experience with the retail market made the couple realize"the future of the independent [retailer] was going to be veryshaky without a tie-in to a nationally recognized name and supportsystem."

A conversion program from Franchise Concepts Inc. fit the billfor the McKennas. Independent framing retailers can convert theirestablishments into one of the companies' franchises, whichinclude Deck The Walls, Great Frame Up, and Framing and ArtCentre.

To aid in the conversion process, Franchise Concepts will waivethe franchise fee for converts. In exchange for a 6 percent royaltyfee, the franchisor offers greater buying power, employee benefitsprograms, training, and merchandising and promotionalmaterials.

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