Franchising in Poland - past, present, future
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The current franchise model of enterprise development has evolved for centuries. Franchising in its contemporary form was initially developed in the American market, but owing to its universality, this model has gained supporters among entrepreneurs all over the world. Today, it is successfully applied in Poland, where nearly 1,2000 net- works, both in the trade and services sectors, follow this model of development. This is so even though franchising is not regulated in detail by law in Poland, and the franchise agreement operates as an innominate contract in the legal order. The legal framework underlying franchise relationships is anchored in various regulations, in particular, those devoted to combating unfair competition. The changes that took place in Poland after 1989 drummed up interest in the Pol- ish market among international companies offering franchise agreements, mostly from North America and Western Europe (Ziółkowska, 2014). A decision was taken to rep- licate the proven and tested projects based on franchise collaboration in new markets. The main reasons for the expansion of franchising in Poland predominantly include • elimination of borders and trade restrictions between post-communist countries and the rest of Europe; and • market potential, due to a large population and the freed society’s needs (Antono- wicz, 2010). Since their launch in Poland, franchise cooperation projects have attracted keen in- terest among entrepreneurs. The dynamic development of the franchise market resulted in qualitative changes in the concepts and boosted their popularity. The distinguishing features of the franchise system market in Poland are its considerable maturity due to the higher number of domestic than of international systems and the expansion of Pol- ish franchise companies outside the country.