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Paul Steinberg's picture

Purpose & philosophy of IFA

The IFA was born as the industry trade association to lobby in opposition to legislation restricting franchisors. It has always followed an extreme laissez-faire position, except when it wants taxpayers to fund the US Commerce Dept's efforts to promote American franchisors overseas.

The only real requirement to operate "under the IFA flag" is to pay the IFA some money. As opposed to the AAFD's "fair franchising" imprimatur, which does require some screening and which will not be given simply upon payment of money, the IFA is not picky.

The IFA has been quite successful in making people think that it is a self-regulatory organization (SRO) along the lines of the old NASD or NYSE organizations. But this has never been the case, and as we have seen with the NASD, it is difficult to be an effective SRO even with the best of intentions.

The IFA will not mandate any program such as you propose-- not because it would have any effect on franchisors, but because the IFA is philosophically opposed to limiting the entry of new franchisors and the expansion (domestically or internationally) of existing franchisors.

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