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Dunkin' Donuts on Expansion Drive

Dunkin' Donuts, America's all-day coffee shop has recently announced the signing of a multi-unit store development agreement with its two franchisee groups. Under the agreement, 24 new restaurants are being planned in Birmingham, Alabama. The restaurants will be opened in phases over the next several years.

Founded in 1950, Dunkin’ Donuts has been a hit with discerning American consumers as an everyday store for coffee and baked foods. In fact, Dunkin’ Donuts is the market leader in the coffee segment (regular/decaf coffee, iced coffee, and hot-flavored coffee) and it is also famous for donuts, bagel, and muffins. Being ranked as number one for consumer loyalty by Brand Keys six times in a row is certainly a feather in Dunkin’s cap. The company has a strong multinational presence with 10,000 restaurants in 32 countries across the globe. During the year 2011, its total sales volume across the globe stood at a staggering $6.4 billion.

The effort on Dunkin’s part to retain its customers worldwide should be included as a case study in business schools. The chain offers all-day menu including iced coffee, flavored coffees, lattes, Dunkin’ Donuts K-Cup packs, frozen drinks, muffins, bagels, breakfast sandwiches, and a DDSMART menu featuring better-for-you items. The list of items is simply tantalizing.

The two franchisees with which Dunkin is planning its expansion in Birmingham are -Barista Food LLC and Coffee Cafe Inc. Barista, led by the Ramon Arias family, plans to develop 16 restaurants. Ramon’s family is going great guns in Central Alabama, Central Louisiana, and Atlanta, Georgia. Other locations are also under the development stage. On the other hand, Coffee Cafe Inc. has been entrusted with the task of setting up the other 8 restaurants. This franchisee has already laid down plans to open the first restaurant in 2013; the remaining seven will be completed by 2018.

Dunkin’ had been sniffing opportunities in and around Birmingham for quite some time. In Alabama, there is still untapped market potential in Huntsville and Montgomery. Their strategy to open single and multi-unit outlets with no minimum unit requirements is considered to be a masterstroke among industry watchers. Grant Benson, CFE, Vice President of Dunkin’s, gives due credit to franchisees for the meteoric rise of Dunkin’s sales volume.
Passionate customer service rendered by the franchisees has continued to yield symbiotic growth for all parties involved. If history repeats itself, these 24 planned restaurants in Birmingham are destined to be successful.

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