Monday, 28 may 2018 | Brenda Rodríguez López
Business internationalization is a goal for many companies. An ambitious objective that can bring great advantages, but which is also associated with certain risks. During the hardest years of the crisis, many enterprises decided to face the difficult situation by taking the leap abroad and diversifying their business. It seems that for many of them it has been an appropriate position. Nowadays, whatever the type is, internationalization is increasingly becoming an imperative when it comes to facing a globalized and connected business environment in a competitive way. In this context of opening up to new markets, a relevant fact is the growth by 6.7% of the Spanish franchises abroad. Almost one in three chains have presence in foreign countries. What are the reasons for this leap? Why does this percentage grow?
Franchises are one of the formulas of business internationalization that boost the brand image best. Chains abroad project an image of leadership, strength and courage. The companies that face the challenge of opening franchises strengthen their position as brands, especially when they do it outside of their natural borders. Perhaps that is one of the reasons that the presence of Spanish franchises in other countries is becoming stronger. A fact that not only contributes to the consolidation of these businesses themselves, but also to the positioning of the "Spain Brand".
The franchises in figures
According to the report Spanish franchise in the world 2018 carried out by the Spanish Association of Franchisors (AEF) with the collaboration of Cajamar, 30% of Spanish franchises have presence outside the borders of the country, a figure that represents almost a third of the total. Currently, there are 334 Spanish chains that jumped abroad with 22,394 establishments. It should be noted that during the last twelve months the opening of stores has reached a total of 664 -3% more than last year-.
Fashion is still the main emblem. Firms such as Mango, Desigual and Inditex are some of the leaders in the international expansion of Spanish franchises. These chains account for 25.7% of the total and are spread over 10,111 stores in 123 markets. In second place, there is the hotel and restaurant business with a percentage of 15.8% and 1,577 establishments in 77 markets. These are followed by industries like beauty and esthetics, specialized stores and furniture and home-textile.
These franchises operate in five continents, in particular, in 139 countries, two more than last year. But it is Portugal, without a doubt, the country preferred by the Spanish brands. This nearby market concentrates 60.1% of the total of the national franchises abroad. It is followed by countries like Mexico, Andorra, France, Italy -by number of brands- and also by Brazil and Argentina -by the number of operational locations, although with fewer chains-. On the other hand, Colombia and Costa Rica are "quite remarkable markets that must be taken into account in the short, medium and long term" according to the words of Eduardo Abadía, the AEF Managing Director.