Allegra Network — A Match Made in Printing
As for Allegra’s buyer profile, a majority of those who sign franchise agreements are former corporate executives who have either lost their jobs due to downsizing or, after 15 to 20 years with the same company, are looking for a new challenge. There is an intriguing mix of skill sets seeking to become franchise proprietors.
“We have owners with sales and marketing backgrounds, and we’re also attracting a lot of IT and engineering people,” Buchanan notes. “And we’re finding people who have been downsized; those who want to control their own destiny and call their own shots.”
Allegra plays an active role throughout the transaction process. The company provides a valuation formula that closely mirrors those extolled in the book “Print Shop for Sale,” by John Stewart and Larry Hunt (two quick printing industry consultants). Allegra has found what it believes to be an “honest and ethical way of valuing a business,” Buchanan states, providing the basis of a fair deal for both parties.
Part of the attraction is the opportunity to take over an existing business with trained employees, cash flow, an established client roster—all the initial, primary concerns of a startup business. This enables the new owner to get to know the business and figure out ways to put his/her signature on the franchise.
Once the final papers are signed, the new owner receives two weeks’ worth of training at Allegra’s Northville headquarters, followed by another week with one of the organization’s regional operations directors.
The former owner, meanwhile, stays on board for roughly 60 to 90 days for a smooth transition. Thus, the new owner benefits from about seven weeks or more of training. Even after that initial training period, the new franchise owner can avail himself to support from the regional operations directors, as well as the think tank back at Northville.