Dubai: The 5th Franchise UAE Expo opens its doors on Wednesday at the Al Bustan Rotana Hotel in Dubai.

Over 3,000 visitors and 80 exhibitors with more than 10 brands from the Middle East, Europe and Asia are expected to attend the two-day event. There will be an exhibition, as well as conferences and workshops that are focused on the franchise industry.

“We want to spread awareness and education about franchising industry. It is beneficial to the UAE economy,” Mana Al Suwaidi, Chairman and CEO of Franchise Middle East Consultancy, the organiser of the show told Gulf News.

According to him, the show is a platform for franchisors and franchisees that want to do business together.

It aims to help those that want to start a franchise or want to convert their existing business into one, Al Suwaidi said. For instance, UAE entrepreneurs who have existing businesses and want to franchise them can meet with regional investors to license their businesses, he said.

According to Al Suwaidi, international participants are not just targeting Dubai, but also the GCC, Asia, the Middle East and the Brics countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

“International companies that want to expand in Eastern Asia can set up representative offices here,” he said.

Meanwhile, as part of the Expo, conferences will be held on franchise governance and investment opportunities in the UAE, among others.

The workshops will educate participants on how to turn a business into a franchise, and will have discussions on franchising experiences.

The size of the franchise market in the Middle East currently stands at $30 billion, and it is growing at a rate of 27 per cent year on year, Al Suwaidi said. Of the 850-plus franchised brands, 60 per cent are in the food and beverage sector.