There are close to 3,000 franchise companies in the United States collectively contributing more than $1 trillion annually to the economy. That said, it was no easy task to crown 50 franchise business owners — one for each U.S. state — as America's Star Franchisees. More than 28,500 individual franchisees, representing 364 franchise brands, were vetted by CNBC's research partner Franchise Business Review to gauge satisfaction with their franchise system and significant financial success, including an income and return on investment that is above the industry average.
These successful franchisees have a lot in common. Most have been in franchising for many years. Many own multiple businesses or have grown their single business to cover a large service area. Most also work with a spouse or other family members. Many found success with low-cost franchises. And money alone wasn't the driving force: Work/life balance, pursuit of a long-held passion and frustration with other careers were all factors that influenced America's Star Franchisees.
To see what it took for these entrepreneurs to succeed, read the America's Star Franchisees full methodology.