Fall is just around the corner, the corner bakery that is. Founded in the early 90’s by Chicago’s Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises [LEYE] group, Corner Bakery Café has undergone several changes in ownership over the past two decades. It’s most recent corporate buyer was Roark Capital Group in 2011, an Atlanta based private equity firm.
The bakery, while well known in the Chicago area with 32 locations, is now finally in expansion mode nationwide. The most franchises can be found in Southern California where 37 locations make corner bakery a popular growing business, following 34 franchises around cities in Texas where the company is headquartered.
This month alone, Corner Bakery has signed additional multi-unit franchise agreements with 21 new locations in Boston, 14 in Tampa, 10 in Northeast Florida, 9 in San Diego, and 7 in Oklahoma.
These expansions are planned meticulously looking at the neighborhoods where the restaurant would reside in keeping with the theme of the café without comprising the company’s brand image. As we’ve heard time and time again in marketing, LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!
Some new franchise partners include:
- FEAST California Café, LLC which owns and operates over 170 Jack in the Box and Denny’s restaurants in the California area
- CBOOK, LLC, which owns and operates over 30 IHG hotels and Subways nationwide
- CB Restaurant Holdings, which owns and operates over 25 Wendy’s locations in southern Florida.
- Lee-Wesley Restaurants, LLC, which manages several fast-food locations nationwide
- Parikh Network, which owns and operates 68 Popeyes locations in Louisiana
Corner Bakery Café differentiates itself based on their multi-service experience of fast in-line ordering, table delivery service, and self-serve beverage refills in collaboration with fresh, quality food options you would find in a quaint neighborhood café. The company hopes to double its U.S. presence by 2016. Let’s hope this mass expansion project doesn’t compromise the authenticity of a corner bakery.