Franchise Times has an interesting article on 20 to Watch: franchise trendsetters in 2015.
One of the more interesting items to me was No. 18 – So Sue Me. Apparently one enterprising insurance executive has set up a suite of insurance products specifically designed for franchisors and franchisees to limit their risk against lawsuits. You can learn more at Franchiseperils.com. (I am not endorsing the product as I have not investigated it but I did find it interesting that someone is now designing insurance products specifically for franchises).
Also, funding for franchises as discussed in No. 20 will only continue to grow in my opinion as more venture capital folks learn that franchising can be a profitable business model when done well.
I encourage you to read the entire article if you are interested in franchising.