As with many franchise organizations, 7-Eleven has a topsy turvy relationship with its franchisees, the owners of its actual stores. In recent years, as BusinessWeek documented, that relationship has led many franchisees to organize and push back together against 7-Eleven’s recent mandates, which they claim are hurting their businesses. And 7-Eleven is fighting back with a shameless strategy: They’re calling immigration authorities on their own stores (at least the ones owned by franchisees they’d rather push out of the business).
Many of 7-Eleven’s franchise stores are owned by immigrants. It’s a part of the company’s origin story and a major factor in the company’s growth and success to date. So, for 7-Eleven to use ICE as a tool in its beef against its own business partners, undermining the immigrant communities that have been so important to the company, it seems like the company is shooting itself in the feet. Today, I wrote a letter to the CEO of 7-Eleven, telling him what I thought about his strategy.