1 The system by which independent firms are authorized to use a common business system. This may include the use of a brand name, designs, patents, and operating systems, and provision of equipment, training, capital, or credit by the franchiser. This system combines the advantages of incentive for the operating firms and economies of scale in research, development, and advertising for the franchiser. The holders of franchises are subject to supervision of their operations in order to maintain the reputation of the franchised product.
2 The civil right to vote. Also known as suffrage. Universal suffrage still remains a relatively recent development. Women were only granted the right to vote in the UK in 1928. Universal suffrage was adopted by the US in 1920 but not enforced until the Civil Rights Act of 1964.