International retail franchising : an agency theory perspective

Doherty, Anne Marie and Quinn, Barry (1999) International retail franchising : an agency theory perspective. International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management, 27 (6). pp. 224-236. ISSN 0959-0552 (

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International retailers are increasingly using franchising as a means of entering foreign markets. However, international retail franchising lacks a conceptual basis from which an explanation of the major elements of this activity can be generated. Agency theory and its major premises of information asymmetry, monitoring costs, moral hazard and opportunism, are introduced in an attempt to provide an initial effort at bridging this conceptual gap. The paper reviews international retailing and franchise research before explaining agency theory. A discussion follows on how agency theory can explain major elements of international franchise activity of retail firms such as the international retail franchise process and the operationalisation of the international retail franchise system.


Doherty, Anne Marie ORCID logoORCID: and Quinn, Barry;