International multi-unit franchising: an agency theoretic explanation
AbstractIn spite of its considerable popularity, multi-unit franchising has been considered an anomaly from an agency theory perspective. This paper addresses this anomaly by attempting a comprehensive agency theoretic explanation of international multi-unit franchising. Although past agency theoretic examinations have mostly focused on single-unit franchising, a closer examination of the international context, which is characterized by significant geographic and cultural distance between franchisors and franchisees, suggests that multi-unit franchising may be more appropriate. This paper examines several agency problems inherent in multi-unit franchising. These include: bonding, adverse selection, information flow, shirking, inefficient risk-bearing, free-riding, and quasi-rent appropriation. Consideration of each of these problems using agency theory perspective leads to the suggestion that multi-unit franchising might address agency problems better than single-unit franchising in the international context.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal International Business Review.
Volume (Year): 12 (2003)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/133/description#description
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