We Are Committed To Constant Adaptation

In a world where technology, culture, and the ways we connect are constantly evolving, NextFran stands out with our commitment to continuous adaptation. We understand that each brand, each franchise, is unique, and we believe in tailoring our system to match your unique needs.

NextFran’s AI Brand Accelerator Program is not a static piece of software; it’s a dynamic, adaptable system designed to evolve with your brand and the ever-changing franchise landscape. Our flexibility allows us to serve each client uniquely, ensuring that our system works seamlessly with your business, no matter how the industry changes.

The Power Team Behind NextFran

NextFran’s co-founders, Brett Payne and Ed Samane, have decades of experience, each developing and running their own franchise systems. They know first-hand the frustrations of connecting with leads and setting appointments. With a proven technique and an AI-backed proprietary system, they decided to join forces to offer this technology to other franchisors.

Who is Brett Payne

Brett Payne is not just the founder of NextFran; he’s a seasoned entrepreneur and business pioneer with a history of successful ventures. Known for creating Contender Esports, a global video game center franchise, Brett has a knack for developing and expanding brands. His work with Classic Rock Coffee, taking it to international heights in countries like Pakistan, Nigeria, UAE, Jordan, and others, is a testament to this. Before embarking on his business journey, Brett dedicated 25 years to non-profit organizations, spending seven years in Ukraine establishing 26 university campuses. His diverse experience and unique perspectives form the bedrock of NextFran. 

Who is Ed Samane

Ed Samane, Co-CEO and President of FRANSAVE and Franchiseyourbusiness.com, brings over 25 years of expertise to the franchise industry. As a co-founder of NextFran, he’s at the forefront of revolutionizing franchising. Ed is a certified franchise advisor and developer with a proven track record, including successful ventures like Pro Martial Arts, Scout & Molly’s, and 76 Fence. His extensive experience enables him to provide strategic guidance, mentoring, and innovative training for franchisees and franchisors. Ed’s visionary leadership has consistently driven organizations to achieve remarkable growth and realize ambitious aspirations.

Who is William Loftus

William Loftus, Co-Founder, Chairman & Chief Technology Officer, brings over 32 years of experience in executive management, operations, and the founding of advanced, innovative, software solution providers. He is a nationally recognized author, technologist, and entrepreneur.

Mr. Loftus is CEO and Managing Director of Gestalt Holdings, an angel investment firm. Recently, he was a Managing Director of Accenture, where he ran several diamond accounts, and focused on innovation. Prior to that, he was CEO of several startups, two of which he sold, and one he helped take public. He started his career working in R&D at Unisys on several contracts for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Mr. Loftus co-authored numerous papers, IEEE standards, and the best-selling textbook, Java Software Solutions, currently used in hundreds of universities worldwide to teach computer science using Java, and has been translated into Korean, Chinese, and Italian.

His distinctions include being named an IEEE Fellow, IEEE National Engineering Manager of the Year, Special Achievement Award from DARPA, E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year award, St. Thomas of Villanova Alumni Medal, Walter M. Aikman Entrepreneur of the Year, recognition by the City of Philadelphia as one of the “40 most accomplished individuals under 40 years old” in 1999, among many others. His academic achievements include a BS in Computer Science and an MS in Computer Science from Villanova University.

Meet The Team

Natalie Nutter, Executive Vice President & Chief Development Officer

Natalie’s trajectory of overachievement began at Purdue University, where she earned a Mechanical Engineering degree in 1984, distinguishing herself as one of only 10 women in her cohort. Her 15-year tenure in Mechanical Design Automation contributed significantly to Rasna Corporation’s success, leading to a $500 Million acquisition by Parametric Technologies in 1995. Transitioning to Business Automation, Natalie played a pivotal role in Blue Martini Software’s startup, witnessing its public debut in July 2000 with a peak market cap of $4.4 Billion.

Her journey continued into Franchise Development, where frustration with the quality of leads led Natalie to spearhead the generation of high-quality franchise leads. Recognizing her expertise, others sought her assistance, leading to the co-founding of Mercury Road. Currently steering 5th Avenue Leads, Natalie’s experience in introducing disruptive technology has made the company one of the fastest-growing in franchise lead generation. Beyond her achievements, Natalie played a crucial role in launching NextFran, an AI-driven franchise candidate and appointment-setting platform, underscoring her commitment to excellence in the evolving landscape of franchise development

Doug Schadle, Executive Franchise Advisor

Doug, as Executive Franchise Advisor at NextFran, brings two decades of expertise from his successful tenure at Rhino 7, where he played a pivotal role in growing franchisors across diverse industries. With a veteran team and a vast network of 2000+ franchise consultants, Rhino 7 offered a significant edge to franchisor strategic partners.

At NextFran, Doug leverages his experience to assist franchisors in strengthening and expanding their brands. He specializes in fostering relationships with Consultant Networks, drawing on Rhino 7’s proven reputation and extensive track record. Doug’s focus revolves around providing operational support to franchisees and driving franchise sales, aligning perfectly with NextFran’s mission to empower franchisors in the ever-evolving franchising landscape.

Stuart Barnes, Vice President of Operations

Stuart Barnes has over a decade of experience in building, managing and operating franchise systems. Prior to entering the franchise industry, he worked in financial services for both The Vanguard Group and Transamerica Corporation. His roles at Vanguard included managing institutional 401(k) relationships and developing new mutual funds for Vanguard investors. At Transamerica, he worked in Strategic Planning and Analysis as a manager responsible for researching and identifying new industries and markets for the firms distribution finance business. Skilled in strategic analysis, team building and business operations, Stuart’s detail-oriented approach has helped him bring visions, both his own and those of others, to fruition. Stuart holds a BA in Political Science and Economics from Principia College and an MBA from The Kellogg School at Northwestern University.

Judimarie Thomas, VP Marketing & Administration

Judimarie Thomas is a corporate communications & marketing communications executive, with over 20 years of experience, and a track record of success, mainly but not exclusively in the healthcare and financial services markets. Judimarie is passionate about and effective at collaborating with clients to tell their stories and to problem solve through communications & marketing strategies.

Judimarie served as Director of Communications at Independence Blue Cross from 2006 through 2018. Prior to that she was second vice president, corporate communications at Lincoln Financial Group. In each role she served as a guardian of the brand and as a trusted advisor and PR coach to the CEO and other C-Suite executives. Judimarie also worked as a consultant in a crisis communications firm in New York after earning her B.S in Communications from Rutgers University

Traci McColley, Client Development

Traci McColley’s contributions to the NextFran team are integral, particularly in her adeptness at client development and meeting the diverse needs of franchisors. Her expertise lies at the intersection of technology and artificial intelligence, positioning her as a respected authority in these rapidly evolving fields.

With a rich background in digital media production and partnership management, Traci has spent more than 15 years shaping and refining innovative programs and events that have significantly influenced the technology industry. Her multifaceted skill set and deep understanding of these sectors continually elevate her to the forefront of technological progress and strategic alliances, catalyzing growth and success in the industry.

Jesse Sweed, Franchise Development

Jesse Sweed, a seasoned expert in Franchisor Support, currently serves as the Director of Sales at NextFran. With a proven track record in franchise development, Jesse leverages his strategic acumen and leadership skills to foster growth and operational efficiency in various industries. His role at NextFran is pivotal in shaping the future of franchise consultancy, as he dedicates his expertise to empower franchisors and businesses within the dynamic franchise landscape. Jesse Sweed is dedicated to helping businesses thrive and succeed in their endeavors, making him a valuable asset in the realm of franchisor support.

We Live in Springfield, MO and Philadelphia, PA

NextFran operates with a strong presence in both Philadelphia, PA, and Springfield, MO. In Philadelphia, a historic and dynamic city, we are strategically positioned to serve our clients nationwide. Meanwhile, in Springfield, Missouri, we maintain a thriving office where we diligently work on franchise opportunities and provide comprehensive support. With a dual presence in these two locations, we ensure accessibility, expertise, and a diverse perspective, allowing us to serve franchisors effectively across the country.