FASTSIGNS Celebrates Banner Year With Increased Franchise Expansion, Robust Sales

Diversified Growth Strategy, Franchisee Satisfaction, Industry Awards Set Stage for Success in 2014

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| Source: FASTSIGNS International, Inc.

CARROLLTON, Texas, Jan. 6, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- While the number 13 is usually considered unlucky, 2013 was another year in a series of strong growth for FASTSIGNS International Inc., the worldwide franchisor for more than 545 FASTSIGNS® sign, graphic and visual communications centers. Besides exceeding goals for opening new centers, signing franchise agreements here and overseas, and completing a third consecutive year of positive sales performance, FASTSIGNS was recognized with multiple honors in both the sign and graphics and franchising industries.

"By all standards, 2013 was a banner year for FASTSIGNS," said CEO Catherine Monson. "We continued to expand through multiple growth strategies, including opening new centers across the United States and Canada, conversion programs for independent sign shops and continued success with its recently launched Co-Brand opportunity for independent printing businesses. The momentum on all fronts will carry us into a strong 2014," Monson said.

But Monson isn't the only one feeling confident about the brand. Franchisees gave FASTSIGNS consistently high satisfaction rankings for support, initial and ongoing, and corporate/franchisee communication in two prominent 2013 franchise industry surveys. Below are some additional key highlights that added up to a record year for FASTSIGNS:

  • Franchise Research Institute certified FASTSIGNS as a 2013 World-Class Franchise and Franchise Business Review included the company on its 2013 "FBR50" and list of top 100 franchises for military veterans.
     
  • Through FASTSIGNS' multi-level development approach with New, Co-Brand and conversion centers, the company increased its 2013 footprint by opening 30 new centers, including signing an additional 37 franchise agreements for new centers to open in the future. 
     
  • FASTSIGNS signed a Letter of Intent for major expansion into five countries, including the United Arab Emirates and North Africa. This expansion is led by Hamdi Osman, chairman of Solitaire IGT and the former chief executive officer of FedEx for the Middle East and Africa.
     
  • System-wide sales have continued strong across the franchise, completing its third year of positive growth. Based on operating statements reported by 237 FASTSIGNS centers open in the United States, the average owner's discretionary profit for those centers for the year ended December 31, 2012 was $206,857. For that same period of time, the average annual gross sales for the top 25 FASTSIGNS centers in the United States were $730,673. **
     
  • Sign & Digital Graphics magazine named Monson one if its industry "Influencers and Innovators" for her significant contributions to the sign and graphics industry. The publication noted her open communication policies that contributed to high franchisee satisfaction.

Carrying the momentum into 2014, FASTSIGNS plans to sign 45 franchise agreements and open an additional 40 centers in the United States and Canada. Target growth markets include: Alaska, California, Florida, the Greater New York City area and the Northeast Corridor of the United States. FASTSIGNS also plans to continue to expand in Canada, Central and South America, India, Europe and the Middle East, due to large business-to-business sectors in those regions with a need for its services.

About FASTSIGNS®

FASTSIGNS International, Inc. is the worldwide franchisor for the more than 545 FASTSIGNS® sign, graphic and visual communications centers in eight countries including the US (and Puerto Rico), Canada, England, Brazil, Mexico, the Caribbean, Saudi Arabia and Australia (where centers operate as SIGNWAVE®). FASTSIGNS provides comprehensive visual communications solutions to help customers of all sizes – across all industries – meet their business objectives and increase their business visibility through the use of signs, graphics, printing, promotional products and related marketing services. FASTSIGNS was ranked number one for three consecutive years in the sign and graphics category in the Entrepreneur Magazine annual Franchise 500®. For franchise information, contact Mark Jameson (mark.jameson@fastsigns.com or 214-346-5679) or visit www.fastsigns.com.

The FASTSIGNS International, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=11508

** Average unit sales and average cash flow is based on unaudited statements supplied by 237 centers opened in the United States for the entire year ended December 31, 2012. The top quartile of the centers based on profitability achieved the average unit sales and cash flow listed above.

Media Contact:
Tori Unger
Fishman Public Relations
(847) 945-1300