Ghana - Country Commercial Guide
Franchising

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country.  Includes a market overview and trade data.  

Last published date: 2022-03-24

Overview

Ghana is fertile ground for the franchising industry, as the concept of franchising is relatively new in Ghana. Nonetheless, franchising is transforming many businesses in sectors such as cafés, food, consulting, education, entertainment, cleaning, travel, and sports. In Ghana, homegrown brands tend to dominate the market. The United States is a key international player in franchising, followed by Canada, the UK, China, and India. U.S. franchises that are active on the market include: iconic U.S. franchise brands such as KFC, Burger King, Marriott Hotel, Holiday Inn, Best Western, Pinkberry, Harley Davidson, Pizza Hut, Dominos, Steak Escape, UPS, Tampico, Mac Cosmetics, American Cola, and Bubble Up.

Despite this progress, only 100 U.S. international franchises operate in Ghana and Nigeria combined, two of Sub-Saharan Africa’s largest markets. So, while the franchise sector has experienced strong growth over the past five years, there is still significant room to grow both food and service-based franchises. Because of the overall growth in the Ghanaian economy and optimism about the future, interest in franchising is growing.  Further, the job creation potential of the industry also has garnered attention and support from policymakers and industry players. Franchise owners in Ghana confirm to U.S. Commercial Service sector specialist that Covid 19 economic contraction did not affect them as much as other businesses.

In December 2021, the American Chamber of Commerce in Ghana (AmCham), in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy, inaugurated a Franchising Committee at the AmCham to advocate for U.S. franchise brands and improve the business enabling environment for the franchise businesses.  

Opportunities

  • The U.S. Commercial Service Ghana stands ready to assist U.S. franchisors to identify or do due diligence on potential partners;
  • Ghana has a stable government, an expanding economy and a strong and growing middle class with an affinity for U.S. brands.  More than half of Ghana’s population is under 27, a demographic that is open to new ideas and new restaurant and lifestyle brands; 
  • Ghana’s role as host to the AfCFTA Secretariat makes it a logical springboard to establishing a franchise in-country and then expanding to neighboring West African markets;
  • A dozen franchises are already succeeding in the Ghanaian market, and Ghana’s proximity to Nigeria—the most populous country in Africa—makes it an ideal platform for growth in West Africa;
  • Ghanaian franchisors have access to lead-generation, online platforms, social media, commercial media, i.e., magazines/industry journals, television and radio for marketing and advertisement.

Improvements to the business-enabling environment for franchises are needed in several areas. The undercapitalization of many local businesses and the high-interest rates for local loans means that many international franchise master licenses are costly for potential Ghanaian franchisees. Franchisors would need to work closely with local franchisees to navigate supply chain issues, especial especially cold chain that could affect perishable items imported from abroad.  The scarcity of experienced, specialized staff requires franchisors to dedicate significant resources to training. The high cost, limited availability, and clean title to suitable real estate in cities such as Accra can be prohibitive in some cases.

Contact: U.S. Commercial Service Ghana, at Office.Accra@trade.gov, Telephone: +233-540-011-5779 for questions about this sector, entering the market, due diligence on franchisees, and upcoming franchising events.     

Resources

Ghana Investment Promotion Center