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The Ultimate Guide to Financing a Franchise Purchase in South Africa

As the franchise industry continues to grow in South Africa, many aspiring entrepreneurs are looking to become franchisees. However, financing a franchise purchase can be a challenge for many people. In this guide, I will provide you with information on the different types of financing options available, as well as how to prepare for franchise funding. Whether you have money to invest or not, this guide will help you understand how to buy a franchise in South Africa.

Introduction to franchising in South Africa

Franchising is a business model where a franchisor grants the right to use its trademark, systems, and processes to a franchisee in exchange for a fee and ongoing royalties. The franchise industry in South Africa is a significant contributor to the country's economy, with over 800 franchise systems and approximately 40,000 franchise outlets. Franchising offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to start a business with a proven concept, established brand, and support from the franchisor.

Types of franchise financing options

There are several financing options available for franchisees in South Africa. These options include:


Self-funding is when an entrepreneur uses their savings or personal assets to finance the franchise purchase. This option allows the franchisee to have complete control over the business and avoid paying interest charges.

Bank loans

Banks offer loans to franchisees to finance the franchise purchase. To qualify for a bank loan, the franchisee must have a good credit score and a solid business plan. The loan amount and interest rate will depend on the franchisee's creditworthiness and the bank's lending policies.

Government funding

The South African government offers funding programs to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). These programs provide financial assistance to entrepreneurs who are starting or expanding their businesses.

Understanding franchise fees and costs

Before deciding to buy a franchise, it's essential to understand the franchise fees and costs involved. These fees and costs include:

Franchise fee

The franchise fee is the initial fee paid to the franchisor to use its trademark, systems, and processes. The franchise fee can range from R50,000 to R500,000, depending on the franchise system.


Royalties are ongoing fees paid to the franchisor for the right to use its trademark, systems, and processes. Royalties are usually a percentage of the franchisee's gross sales and can range from 3% to 10%.

Advertising fees

Advertising fees are fees paid by franchisees to the franchisor for national advertising campaigns. Advertising fees are usually a percentage of the franchisee's gross sales and can range from 1% to 5%.

Other costs

Other costs involved in franchising include rent, equipment, inventory, staff, and utilities. The franchisor may also require the franchisee to attend training sessions and purchase products from approved suppliers.

How to buy a franchise with no money

Buying a franchise with no money may seem impossible, but there are ways to achieve it. Here are some tips on how to buy a franchise with no money:

Look for a low-cost franchise

Look for a franchise system with a low franchise fee and low start-up costs. Some franchisors offer financing options or payment plans to help franchisees with limited funds.

Consider a partnership

Consider partnering with someone who has the financial resources to invest in the franchise. A partnership can also bring complementary skills and experience to the business.

Use personal assets

Use personal assets such as a home equity loan, credit cards, or a retirement savings account to finance the franchise purchase. However, this option comes with a significant risk and should only be considered after careful consideration.

Qualifying for franchise funding

To qualify for franchise funding, the franchisee must have a solid business plan, a good credit score, and a track record of success in business. The franchisor may also require the franchisee to have a certain level of experience in the industry.

Preparing a franchise business plan

A franchise business plan is essential when seeking franchise funding. The business plan should include:

Executive summary

The executive summary should provide a brief overview of the franchise business and its objectives.

Market analysis

The market analysis should identify the target market, competition, and growth potential.

Franchise fees and costs

The franchise fees and costs should be outlined in detail, including the initial franchise fee, royalties, advertising fees, and other costs.

Financial projections

The financial projections should include income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets for the first three to five years of the franchise business.

Franchise finance institutions in South Africa

There are several franchise finance institutions in South Africa that offer funding options for franchisees. These institutions include:

Business Partners Limited

Business Partners Limited is a South African investment company that provides financing, mentorship, and support to SMEs.

Franchising Plus

Franchising Plus is a consulting firm that specializes in franchise development and financing.


Nedbank is a South African bank that offers franchise funding options, including loans and overdrafts.

Tips for securing franchise funding

Securing franchise funding can be a challenge, but there are ways to increase your chances of success. Here are some tips for securing franchise funding:

Have a solid business plan

Having a solid business plan that outlines the franchise business's goals, market analysis, and financial projections can increase your chances of securing franchise funding.

Build a good credit score

A good credit score is essential when seeking franchise funding. Paying bills on time and managing debt responsibly can help improve your credit score.

Network with other franchisees

Networking with other franchisees can provide valuable insights and connections that can help you secure franchise funding.

Pros and cons of franchise financing

Franchise financing has its pros and cons. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of franchise financing:


  • Access to a proven business model and established brand

  • Support from the franchisor

  • Lower failure rates compared to starting a business from scratch


  • High initial investment

  • Ongoing fees and royalties

  • Limited control over the business


Financing a franchise purchase can be a challenge, but with the right information and preparation, it's possible to achieve your goal of becoming a franchisee in South Africa. Whether you have money to invest or not, there are financing options available to help you buy a franchise. Remember to do your due diligence and seek advice from professionals to ensure you make an informed decision. Good luck on your franchise journey.

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