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This paper attempts to identify the effects of several variables on the international expansion pursued by Spanish service franchise chains. These include: management and franchising experience, brand awareness, the international franchise ratio, and a franchisor's size. Specifically, the study looks at 125 franchisors doing business in 44 foreign countries in late 2009. Findings allow us to conclude that management and franchising experience, together with brand awareness, the international franchise ratio and company size are significantly associated with (i) the number of countries where the chain has a presence; (ii) the number of operational outlets the franchisor has abroad, and (iii) the number of years the chain has been operating overseas.
international marketing; service companies; franchise system; internationalization; agency theory; signaling theory