World Franchise Associates - Building Franchise Business Worldwide

World Franchise Associates - Directors

Paul Cairnie
Paul Cairnie,
Chief Executive Officer


Founder of WFA with 20 years experience of international franchising encompassing development, marketing and media in North America, Europe & Middle East markets. Member of the Advisory Council for the Global Restaurant Leadership Conference. Publisher of World Franchise Review.

Sary Hamway
Sary Hamway,
Chief Operating Officer, Middle East


Winner of the International Franchise Association Award and many International & Regional Trophies. Sary has accumulated experience of over 30 years in the restaurant franchising business. Recognized as an international authority on franchising in the Arab World, he currently speaks at major franchise seminars and other related events around the globe.

Martin Hancock
Martin Hancock,
Chief Operating Officer, North America


Martin is a franchise professional with expertise in business planning, territory development, sales and marketing. Prior to joining WFA Martin built a retail brand in the USA. He has a clear understanding of what it takes to develop a successful business from both the franchisors and the investors side.

Troy Franklin
Troy Franklin,
WFA South East Asia


Troy has more than 25 years of experience in senior executive positions in international franchising and business development working directly with and consulting for both franchisors and master franchisees. Troy’s experience spans across multiple regions including extensive experience in the Asia Pacific Region.

Troy represents WFA in Asia, and has a strong network of franchise professionals in the Southeast Asian region, including Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines.


Christopher Brinkley
Christopher Brinkley,
Director Franchise Investor Relations


Founder member of WFA. His franchise experience goes back to 1996 in staging the UK's National Franchise Exhibitions over 4 years and being linked to the organisers of international franchise events in the US, Europe and the Middle East. As well as directing WFA's own international franchise events, he is Director of Investor Relations to support the Company's growing portfolio of international Brands in Europe, the MENA Region, Asia, Latin America and the Far East.

Jake Kidde-Hansen
IT Director


Founder member of WFA. Jake’s career includes project management with the United Nations in East Africa and tourism management and marketing in Kenya. Over 19 years experience designing and creating websites, his innovative approach ensures WFA stands out from the crowd.

World Franchise Associates - Team

Yuliya Bilous
Yuliya Bilous, Director of Franchising, Canada

Experienced senior professional with a diverse international background in marketing, business development and management specializing in mass-market and high-end fashion retail and wholesale and a track record of successful launches and roll-outs of global brands into new markets.

Elvin Hajiyev
Elvin Hajiyev,
WFA Azerbaijan

A young entrepreneur from Azerbaijan, educational background from George Washington (USA) and Oxford University (UK). Founder of Babylon Group, involved in Agricultural, Trading and Food and Beverage Businesses. Master Franchise owner of famous Turkish fast food chain Sultanahmet Koftecisi, and several other self-made concept restaurants in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Abbas Khalil
Abbas Khalil, WFA Qatar & Egypt Associate

Abbas is French Egyptian with 25 years plus of Branding, Marketing, Trading, Business Development and General Management. Abbas held several titles in Europe, G.C.C and MENA region. Currently Abbas runs private ventures in Egypt & Qatar, where he owns his own private advertising firm as well as several trading operations.

Hesham Mourad
Hesham Mourad, WFA Qatar & Egypt Associate

Hesham boasts 17 years of International Trade, Management, Retail, Sales and Business Development. A graduate of Civil Engineering, his career spanned the G.C.C where he held several posts in major public listed and private companies. Hesham has successfully led projects spanning out of several countries worldwide working with partners from the United States, Europe and Far East, with a focus on Retail, OEM branding and Contracting.

Amjad Siddique
Amjad Siddique, WFA Oman Associate

A Business development , sales & operation expansion expert with 25 years experience. As part of my sales leadership / P&L responsibility successfully designed and implemented Go-to market plans for revenue streams, including partnerships with consultants, Investors , International hospitality brands and developers Excels in evaluating client requirements, and delivering strategic solutions to complex sales, key account management, and business development opportunities. Strategic and hands on, with strong project and product management sensibility and ability to be engaged, tenacious and passionate about delivering outstanding and creative ideas for market penetration.

Rudy Kunz, Geschäftsführer IoE Österreich
Rudy Kunz, Institute of Entrepreneurship

Rudy is shareholder and executive consultant in the institute of entrepreneurship (IoE) - the leading consulting group for self-employment in the German speaking area. IoE has access to experienced senior managers and investors, who are also suitable for master licensing to make use of their knowledge and expertise. On the other side, the IoE supports companies in finding the best prospects for their needs.

Dr. Reza Samizadeh
Dr. Reza Samizadeh, WFA Iran Associate

Dr Samizadeh is prominent in the Iran business community. Current positions include: CEO of Nirvan Business Development Group, a leading business development and marketing consulting company that specialize in helping small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) create sustainable growth through successful expansion into international markets. Senior Advisor of TAT Group, the Owner Group of Iran Mall. Board Member and CEO of Iran Mall Commercial Co. Tehran ICT Guild – Board Member, Head of Board of Directors in Iran Apple Center, Managing Director of Padisar Informatic Inc. and Head of Board of Directors and Managing Director of Iran’s Investment Information Technology Co.

Amir Nabi
Amir Nabi, WFA Iran Associate

Amir has worked as Head Of Franchising for Wayne’s Coffee the largest coffee shop brand in Scandinavia with more than 150 outlets in Scandinavia, Polen, Estonia, China & Saudi Arabia. He has signed more than 60 franchise deals during his professional carrier internationally. Amir has created a number of successful Hospitality brands in Sweden and recently was the Head Of Business Development of the Dubai based Holding Whissle with brands as OKKU, CLAW, Riva Beach Club, Sophie’s Gastro Café. He has been involved in 100+ restaurant opening during his vibrant F&B experience..

Mohammed Abu Zaid, WFA KSA
Mohammed Abu Zaid, WFA KSA

Mohammed Abu Zaid is a Marketing bachelor graduate from King Fahad University of Petroleum. He has solid knowledge of marketing and updated on new trends and techniques. Over 10 years of experience working in sales, customer and business development, and marketing in industries of food and beverage, retail, and real estate where he has made numerous contributions to his firms by increasing sales, improving customer service, and growing relationships with current and new customers. He also worked as a consultant in several projects in the scope of brand development, advertising campaigns, and marketing research for more than 30 brands and companies.

Gary Chagalasyan, WFA East Europe

Karen Gary Chaglasyan is the Founder, President and the CEO of InterDining Group based in Moscow, Russia. Company is one of the leaders in the Russian market within the hospitality industry, specializing in developing and operating theme restaurant concepts. InterDining Group presents a wide array of dining and entertainment concepts that have proven to be survivors in the often volatile Moscow hospitality environment.

Jon Cullen
Jon Cullen,
Director of Franchising, United Kingdom

Former European Managing Director of Cartridge World and European Franchise Director for Pirtek, Jon has 20 years of franchise development experience in the UK, Europe and Middle East. Experienced Senior Executive accustomed to operating at board level in large national/international companies involved in franchising.

Dr. Peerapong Kitiveshpokawat
Dr. Peerapong Kitiveshpokawat, Business Development, Thailand

Dr. Peerapong is one of the most respected names in Consulting, Franchising and Retail Business Strategy in Thailand. During his career in Franchising Dr. Peerapong has been awarded “Role Model, DIP Consultant in Management” by the Thai Ministry of Industry and a Silver Medal in the Most Admirable Order of the Direkgunabhom, conferred by His Majesty the King of Thailand.

Samiullah Mohabbat
Samiullah Mohabbat,
WFA Pakistan

Former COO of Hardee’s Pakistan, Samiullah started his career with KFC Pakistan as Assistant Restaurant Manager in January 2003, successfully climbed the career ladder to the mid level management in operations department for over 5 years by winning the YUM Operations Excellence award.

Bilal Muhabat, WFA Pakistan

As a Director of Augment Pvt Ltd, I lead the international franchise sales and development efforts of this highly successful franchise development company; I help local investors/groups to identify and acquire best available international franchised brands for the territory of Pakistan. On behalf of our international franchisor clients I asses and qualify candidates and franchisees for the territory development.

Sandra Carrillo Massa, Latin/South America
Sandra Carrillo Massa, Latin/South America

Managing Partner and Head of the Consulting Business Unit of Grupo Nexo Franquicia, Latin America´s #1 franchise consultancy and brokerage firm. Sandra has over 15 years of experience managing consumer & personal care brands in Latin America & Europe, as well as business consultancy with special focus on Strategic Planning and Process Management.

Dr Farag Saad
Fernando López de Castilla, Latin/South America

Fernando López de Castilla, a graduate of the University of Texas Business School and Harvard Law School in USA, is the Founding Partner of Grupo Nexo Franquicia, Latin America´s # 1 franchise consultancy. Widely respected for his opinions, professor, author and speaker, Fernando López de Castilla actively promotes Latin America´s franchising industry.

Sofia Leong Abdullah - Project Manager
Phi Nguyen - Business Development Director Indochina

Phi Nguyen holds an MBA at Central Queensland University, Australia majoring in marketing communication. Her experience spans over 15 years as a senior executive in brand, retail, and franchise development across global emerging markets, with the latest projects focusing on Asia. Phi is also board advisor at the Chief Marketing Officer Council (CMO), board director of the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam and editor & host of Insight Vietnam, an investment talk-show broadcasted on Vietnam VTV4.

Rich Backstrom
Rich Backstrom, Business Development Director Philippines

Rich Backstrom is an experienced restaurant and hospitality industry professional with over 24 years of experience in the USA and internationally. During his time in the Philippines he has worked with several leading local brands to establish their international development process and expansion strategy preparing them for franchise expansion in Asia and the Middle East. With his local knowledge and relationships he is also well positioned to help international brands enter into the Philippines and capitalize on the significant opportunities in the market.

Hsien Naidu
Hsien Naidu, Business Development Director Singapore

Hsien Naidu is a Senior Practicing Management Consultant certified by the Singapore Business & Advisors Council (SBACC), an ACTA(Advanced Certified trainer and assessor) certified trainer and a Certified Franchise Executive by IFA. Her wide experience in International Business Development and Marketing from varying industries has been integral to her success as the founder and director of Astreem Consulting and the work she has done in the franchising sector, bringing sustainable and relevant growth strategies to countless organisations.

Burang Riyadi Saleh – Business Development Director Indonesia
Burang Riyadi Saleh, Business Development Director Indonesia

Burang Riyadi is one of the pioneers in franchise consultancy in Indonesia having established his franchise consultancy company International Franchise Business Management (IFBM) in 1994. Today Burang is recognized as one of the leaders in the Indonesian franchise industry having contributed to the education and understanding of franchising and having been responsible for the growth and development of franchising including supporting hundreds of local companies to develop and expand their business through franchising.

Sofia Leong Abdullah - Project Manager
Sofia Leong Abdullah, Project Manager Malaysia

Sofia has almost 30 years of accumulated hands-on experience in design & construction, property management, services & hospitality and franchising. Sofia has been involved in the franchise industry since 1997 and in 2012 she established Business Evolution, a franchise consultancy firm focused on assisting business owners to venture into the franchise industry and enhancing their businesses to be competitive in the global market.

Maki Higashijima – WFA Japan
Maki Higashijima, WFA Japan

With 10+ years of international business experience, Maki specializes in helping businesses grow in the U.S. and Japan. Combining new business development, marketing, research and analysis, project management, business planning, and complex negotiation skills, Maki helps her clients successfully navigate the challenges inherent in launching their businesses in new markets.

Elchin Abdullayev, WFA CIS

Elchin Abdullayev - WFA President, Operations CIS, based in Baku/Azerbaijan. A very experience professional, Elchin has been at the forefront of modernisation in Azerbaijan and neighbouring countries in his role as Country Director of Innovation Technical & Construction Services, and manages the Caucacus regions business for Teleperformance. In his role at WFA, Elchin helps identify prospective partners in the region.



World Franchise Associates - Support

Winona GaganWinona Gagan, Events Manager, World Franchise Associates
Bachelor Degree in Accountancy/Financial Management. Winona has over 16 years of experience in senior executive position in international and national trade exhibitions and events in different sectors including franchising, SME, jewelry & accessories, agriculture, food & technology, plastic & rubber and many others.Has diverse experience in management & administrative, marketing and business development.


Ishaque Ahmed SiddiquiFiona Perera, Business Development Manager South East Asia
Fiona Perera has experience across a range of fields including international franchising & business development, retail management, events & entertainment, and marketing & public relations. Fiona has a Master’s Degree in Law from the University of London.


Rada K. MikhaielStuart Anderson, Editor, World Franchise Review
Stuart has extensive experience in managing the development, maintenance and improvement of websites and publications. He has strong writing and design skills across both print and digital products, and has over 10 years experience as Editor of a UK franchise publication.


Ishaque Ahmed SiddiquiMohammed Alabadla, Email Campaign Marketing Manager
Mohammed has been designing and building websites, and managing email marketing programmes for over 8 years, first at FranExcel, and later at WFA/


Olya GundyakOlya Gundyak, Senior Business Manager
Master's degree in Organisational Management. Olya specializes in research and international databases. Olya manages the matchmaking team and assists the directors. Fluent in Russian, German & English.


Yuliya NazarchukYuliya Nazarchuk, Business Manager & Editor of FranSpeak International
With a Degree in Finance, Yuliya specializes in research and manages WFA's international databases. Fluent in English & Russian. Responsible for the content of Franspeak International. Previous experience in banking industry.


Davies Malesi - IT DevelopentDavies Malesi, IT Development
Computer Science Graduate from the University of Nairobi, Davies has worked in website and systems development for the past 16 years. Key roles are to develop IT solutions and equip the company for growth and efficiency.


Maral AnnayevaMaral Annayeva, Forum Support Services
Master's Degree in international law and psychologyMaral specializes in the research of international markets and forum support services. She assists the team by preparing for the forums and speaks several languages.


Associate Consultants

Our creative branding and digital communications team provides integrated marketing communications services that are cost effective and efficient; however, we directly will impact your brand's bottom line, this is not spontaneous, our extraordinary branding knowledge and our belief that branding promotes recognition and sets our client apart from the competition are reflected on our branding identity services.


Joe Moufarrej - Branding & Communications
Joe Moufarrej, Branding & Communications


Huseyin Sevket – Strategy Implementation
Huseyin Sevket, Strategy Implementation

Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality and Masters in Hospitality. A proactive, dynamic and entrepreneurial Managing Director with over 35 years' extensive international experience and proven track record of achievement and success in blue chip complex hospitality organisations.

A hospitality professional with expertise in Coffee Shops, Casual Dining, QSR, Contract Catering, Airline Catering, Facilities Management, Supermarket, Hotels, New Concept Design and Logistics in various countries including UAE, KSA, Kuwait, Turkey, Greece, Italy & UK) Adept at increasing profits, driving revenue growth and territory performance with wide-ranging technical skills including sales & marketing, financial, commercial and operational.

A 30+ year veteran of the Food and beverage industry in the United States. Paul has first-hand knowledge of the franchising industry having been both a franchisee (Burger King, Au Bon Pain) and a franchisor (Saladworks). With broad experience in traditional QSR as well as fast casual and bakery cafes, Paul brings a wealth of knowledge to the table. Deep experience in franchising, operations, marketing, store design, distribution, menu development, training, and construction will all be brought to bear to facilitate entry in the US franchise market place


Paul Steck, US Franchise Market Entry, F&B
Paul Steck, US Franchise Market Entry, F&B


Dugan Aylen - Franchise Recruitment Systems
Mark Avery, Avery Global, Supply Chain Management

Mark, President of Avery Global, is a world-class supply chain innovator with 25 years of domestic and international supply chain management in the foodservice industry, as well as, executive senior leadership experience. His willingness to meet challenges head on has brought win-win results that were often thought impossible. Avery Global is a global consultancy focused on supply chain services. Expertise in process improvement, developing strategic sourcing solutions with suppliers/distributors, and global sourcing helps Avery Global's clients to implement and improve their:
- Currency fluctuations on Supply Chain Management
- Source high-quality, local produce and bakery items
- Localize menu offerings
- Third-party food safety check and approvals
- Reduce costs associated with global supply chains

Understanding the client's requirements, we provide a specialised service whether for a new food concept creation and development or a turn-around of an existing concept towards franchising and expansion. We support owners interested in having a bespoke-experience for their own restaurants or cafes. Our aim is to build a world-class image for the client's business supporting the client in launching a new concept from scratch as well as running an existing operation that requires a major change. Our aim is to deliver first-rate services to the highest standards in restaurant design, development, management and franchising to maximise client's benefits in achieving results and growth.


Khaled Mersi, Restaurant Design, Development, Franchising and Management
Khaled Mersi, Restaurant Design, Development, Franchising and Management


Drew Paras
Drew Paras, USA Franchise Development

Mr. Paras has been involved in US franchise business growth and development for over 20 years. As a Founder & Co-Founder of multiple franchised brands, with units opened and operating throughout the US. Based on his experiences as a Franchisee and Franchisor, Drew has authored several business books and guides focusing on improving day-to-day operations and highlighting best practices to achieve greater unit level profitability. He is widely considered an expert within the field of US Master Franchising and Area Development, regularly consulting with franchisors to create and execute business driving growth strategies

Victor's 30 years of experience in operations, franchise development, mergers, sales, marketing and brand management make him one of the most versatile and accomplished consultants in the industry. Before establishing his own business, Victor progressed through the ranks to become the Operations and Development Executive at one of the largest restaurant and hospitality companies in the U.S. Both as an executive and as a consultant, he has developed franchise partnerships, opened and supported restaurants across North America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Innovation, leadership and a "support and develop your people" philosophy represent Victor's foundation and operating principle.


Victor Jones. Restaurant operations
Victor Jones, Restaurant Operations


Stewart Germann, Franchise Law
Stewart Germann, New Zealand Franchise Development

Stewart Germann is acknowledged as New Zealand's leading franchising lawyer with over 35 years experience and is a recognised national and international guest speaker at franchise conferences (New Zealand, Australia, USA). Stewart Germann Law Office (SGL) is New Zealand's longest established specialist franchising law firm and has won multiple Franchising Awards over the years. Stewart is one of only two New Zealand lawyers included in the International Who's Who of Franchise Lawyers 2016. SGL clients include many of New Zealand's best known national and international franchise brands and Stewart has extensive franchising contacts worldwide and locally. He is actively involved in international franchising and has written many articles which have been published overseas including in the International Journal of Franchising Law.

Stuart is the Managing Director of Leadership Team Advisers, a consultancy providing services to leaders of the hotel, restaurant and gaming industries. Practice areas include senior-level executive search, mid-management recruitment, market research, compensation consulting and business strategy and implementation. Stuart has worked extensively throughout the United States, Caribbean, Eastern Europe, sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East and has earned merit as trusted advisor working with many of the industry leading hotel and restaurant operators, developers, private equity firms, sovereign wealth funds and government ministries of tourism.


Stuart K. Smith, CHA, Global Hospitality Consulting
Stuart K. Smith, CHA, Global Hospitality Consulting


Sharif Akkad
Sharif Akkad, Franchise Law, Middle East

Sharif Akkad, has over 19 years of experience and is one of the leading franchise lawyer in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East. Sharif also has expertise in dealing with licensing, agency, distributorship agreement and issues related to intellectual property. To date Sharif has worked on more than (300) agreements, including Subway, Calvin Klein, D&G, Guess, Fossil, Esprit, Rebook, Second Cup, Ikea, Levis, Cartier, Applebee's, Outback Steakhouse, Mugg & Bean, Bonia, International, Reply, Max Mara, Stefanel, French Connection, Kika, Barnies, Ebel Watches, Sleep High, Go Sport, Tom Tailor, Vans Co. Ltd., Arabian Oud, Tony Roma's and Wing Zone.

A learning and performance strategist, Venu Babla, Principal at Franchise Mind USA has over 25 years of entrepreneurial experience in building franchise businesses from concept to implementation, focused on development of operational and training systems. Her franchise journey includes being a Franchisee, Master Licensee as well as a Franchisor in various different industries. Her company provides education, consultancy and mentoring for franchise organizations to develop standards of quality and excellence.

A rare combination--a professional with real life experience in founding and managing franchise companies and the expertise to develop efficient operational systems and practical training programs. With experience from the US and South East Asia spanning a variety of industries including, printing, photography, cafes, sports training, juice manufacturing and distribution, adventure parks, optical, cleaning, various food & beverage, retail, pre-schools, and many more.


Venu Babla, M.Ed. Franchise system strategy & development: Operations, Training, & Support systems
Venu Babla, M.Ed. Franchise system strategy & development: Operations, Training, & Support systems


Sharif Akkad
Mustafa Al Ansari, Entrepreneur

Founder and the CEO of Access Dubai, Mustafa is a multicultural business professional, an entrepreneur and venture investor. Prior to his entrepreneurship career, Mustafa was leading various projects in the Department of Economic Development in Dubai, and worked on several missions at The Executive Office of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister and Vice President of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai. Mustafa is also serving his duties as the Personal Advisor for HRH Prince Khalid Bin AlWaleed Bin Talal Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, and is the General Director for Prince's office in UAE. Mustafa dedicates his time and energy to support businesses and innovative ideas entering the Middle East region.

Ahmet Murtezaoglu is one of three people who has established and developed QSR Industry in Turkey and he has over 30 years of experience in operations, franchise development, sales, marketing and brand management. Ahmet has started his restaurant career in Garfunkel's Restaurants in The UK. After moving to Turkey he progressed his ranks to become Operations and Training Executive at McDonald's Turkey and McDonald's UK, and within those years, he has consulted many local and International brands and developed managers who works as executive directors in those brands. After deciding to move his experience into consulting area, left his Managing Director position in Krispy Kreme Doughnuts in Turkey, and consulted companies in Turkey, Azerbaijan and Iran. As Ahmet is the first Training Manager of QSR Industry in Turkey, he continues presenting training sessions, seminars and conferences in different countries.


Ahmet Murtezaoglu
Ahmet Murtezaoglu, QSR Training Executive, Turkey


Dugan Aylen - Franchise Recruitment Systems
Dugan Aylen, Franchise Recruitment Systems

Dugan has been involved specifically in franchisee recruitment for over 12 years and has a passion for helping franchise companies find the right profile of franchise owner. Over 10 years ago, he founded Franchise Recruitment Services (FRS), a consultancy group specializing in every process involved in the recruitment of franchisees. Through this he created the Franchise Recruitment System, a unique cloud-based software system which handles every aspect of this crucial area of franchising.




© World Franchise Associates Ltd 2016. All rights reserved.
UK Company No. 6203737. 26 York Street, London, W1U 6PZ. +44 (0) 8446 698 980

Disclaimer: World Franchise Associates Ltd. is a privately owned limited liability company specializing in international franchise development and advisory services.
World Franchise Associates is not an NGO or franchise association and is not affiliated in any way with the World Franchise Council.
World Franchise Associates is a member of the International Franchise Association. Member of the IFA International Committee and
Member of the Advisory Council for the Global Restaurant Leadership Conference.