Business, Paul Eckert

International Franchise Association Hosts 57th Annual Convention


International Franchise Association  pic
International Franchise Association

As a senior executive in the franchise industry for more than 25 years, Paul Eckert is founder and owner of the Eckert Group as well as president and chief executive officer of Family Financial Centers, LLC, both based in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. He recently opened a third firm, Family Partners Insurance. Paul Eckert maintains membership with the International Franchise Association (IFA), where he is part of the Finance Relations Committee.

Founded more than 55 years ago, the IFA is the world’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to worldwide franchising. The organization supports, protects, and promotes franchising, which accounts for more than 9.1 million jobs and $994 billion for the U.S. economy. Members of the IFA are found in more than 300 different types of businesses.

To reach out to its members, the IFA hosts an annual convention. The 2017 event is scheduled for January 29 through February 1 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada. Typically bringing together more than 4,000 franchise executives, this conference features a variety of committee meetings, networking opportunities, and workshops. Attendees also have an opportunity to meet with numerous exhibitors at the 57th annual convention.

Paul Eckert, Technology

he Rise of Mobile Payment Options

Mobile Payment Options pic
Mobile Payment Options

Paul Eckert is the founder and CEO of Family Financial Centers in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. Serving as a senior executive within the franchise industry for over 25 years, Paul Eckert believes in the power of technology in branding and marketing.

One way franchised businesses are taking advantage of technology is through mobile pay options, like the Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks apps that let customers pay with their smartphones.

Customers want convenience, speed, and brand interaction, according to Angela Abdallah, Dunkin’ Donuts’ manager of digital marketing and innovation. This is why it did not take much marketing to sell customers on the brand’s Dunkin’ App, which takes advantage of Apple Pay and Visa Checkout to enable customers to quickly pay for their morning donuts or coffee with their phone. Since the app’s release in 2012, 18 million Dunkin’ Donuts customers have downloaded it.

As for the coffee giant Starbucks, the company revealed during its first-quarter earnings call that 21 percent of the company’s transactions are carried out via the Starbuck’s app or another mobile point of sale system.

While seeing the most success in quick service food and drink industries, mobile payment use has been steadily rising in general since 2012. A 2016 report found that 40 percent of consumers use some form of mobile payment technology.

Paul Eckert

The International Franchise Association Works to Save Small Businesses

International Franchise Association
International Franchise Association


As the founder and CEO of Family Financial Centers, Paul Eckert of Doylestown, Pennsylvania, paved the way for more than 40 locations of his franchise. Paul Eckert has enjoyed a good deal of franchising success in Doylestown and the surrounding communities and works with the International Franchise Association to further expand his reach.

The International Franchise Association engages in advocacy and lobbying work in order to support franchisees across the planet. In the United States, a major component of this is the Coalition to Save Local Businesses. This group works to facilitate commerce, and especially franchisees, at the local level.

The coalition’s goals are currently being threatened by the National Labor Relations Board. This unelected body of officials seeks to change some of the laws that affect contracts between businesses. Proposed changes could have negative impacts for some small business owners, and the Coalition worries that these changes may discourage others from creating new small businesses altogether.

To learn more about franchising, small businesses, and the threats they face today, visit