bfa appoints new chief executive as franchise industry soars

Pip Wilkins will replace Brian Smart from April and plans to lead the British Franchise Association in its next stage of development...

The British Franchise Association (bfa), the leading regulatory body for the franchise industry, has appointed a new chief executive to lead the group in its next phase of growth.

Currently working as head of operations for the bfa, Pip Wilkins will take over from Brian Smart as chief executive from April 6 2016 and intends to build on the bfa’s previous success to “bring a new vision and new ideas to increase the Association’s stature and influence”.

Established in 1977, the bfa is a self-regulating governing body for UK franchising and operates as a non-profit organisation which accredits franchises and advises in the sector according to ethical and business criteria.

The news follows recent reports which indicate the franchise sector is experiencing renewed prosperity with over 900 franchises now operating in the UK, record levels of franchisee-owned businesses, and a 70% increase in franchise-employees over the last 10 years.

Wilkins commented: “I am delighted to have been appointed. There is no better time to be involved in franchising thanks to its strong recent growth, with the industry’s turnover up 11% in the last two years and now exceeding £15bn.

bfa chairman, Simon Bartholomew, added:

“Wilkins has already contributed a great deal to the development and success of the bfa and it is only right she has won this opportunity to lead the bfa in its next stage of development.”

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