Beyond Economic Factors, Growth Depends on Leadership at the Restaurants

Chain Leader recently caught up with Applebee’s franchisee Zane Tankel, whose company, Apple-Metro, continues to open restaurants despite the downturn. And why not? His 32 Applebee’s are posting nearly twice the average volume ($2.4 million) of the rest of the casual-dining system. He plans to open five more next year. A Wharton School of Business graduate, he opened his first Applebee’s 16 years ago with partner Roy Raeburn. This year the company was named Franchisee of the Year by the franchisor.

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Coffee and Donuts Need Lobbyist Too!

Erika Lovley at Politico Click interviews Cicely Simpson, director of federal and state government affairs for Dunkin’ Brands, who has one of the most scrumptious lobbying jobs in town.

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Dunkin’ is named interactive marketer of the year

The Boston Globe reports that Dunkin’ Donuts was named the “interactive marketer of the year” at last night’s 14th annual awards competition sponsored by the Massachusetts Innovation & Technology Exchange, or MITX. A microsite created by Sapient to support Coca-Cola’s Happiness campaign was cited as best of show, and Mullen of Boston got the “people’s choice for interactive agency of the year,” MITX said.

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Worcester Landmark Gets a Face-Lift

The Worcester Telegram reports that the Harrington Corner building at 421-427 Main St., above, a landmark of the city’s commercial district, has undergone a face-lift, with interior renovations expected to go into the winter.

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Small business loans: $10 billion evaporates

Catherine Clifford reports at CNNMoney.com that eight months after President Obama began prodding the nation’s banks to increase their small business lending, the loan numbers continue to move in the opposite direction. The 22 banks that got the most help from the Treasury’s bailout programs cut their small business loan balances by a collective $10.5 billion over the past six months, according to a government report released Monday. Three of the 22 banks make no small business loans at all. Of the remaining 19 banks, 15 have reduced their small business loan balance since April, when the Treasury department began requiring the biggest banks receiving Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funding to report monthly on their small business lending.

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RPCI, Dunkin’ team on ‘Mug of Hope’

Buffalo BusinessFirst Journal reports that Roswell Park Cancer Institute is marking the 20th anniversary of The Paint Box Project with fund-raising assistance from Dunkin’ Donuts. The renowned cancer hospital is incorporating the work of several youngsters, including two patients — Amanda and Shannon, who have literally left their handprint on the newest Paint Box gift.

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Dunkin Donuts gets holiday spirit

U.S. Marines and Dunkin’ Donuts franchises celebrated the holiday spirit during a huge shopping spree Monday at Toys R Us to purchase toys for the Toys for Tots Holiday Train for its annual trip through the state. The shopping trip was made possible by a $20,000 donation to the Toys for Tots Foundation by Dunkin’ Donuts for use to purchase toys for needy children from Binghamton to Albany to Plattsburgh.

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Ten tips for franchise due diligence

Christa Hoyland writes in QSR.com that Marianne Cintron of Glendora, Calif., thought she had done her homework. When she and her husband looked into buying a Cold Stone Creamery store from a franchisee last year, she started by trying to talk to a number of current franchisees. Of the five who returned her calls, four were selling their stores. Despite the unusually high percentage of sellers, Cintron was reassured by the good things most of them had to say about the concept.

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Starbucks on track to resume growth, CEO announces

Steve Monfort reports at NASDAQ that new instant coffee is outselling expectations and cost-cutting is helping the bottom line, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced at a conference in California. The new instant coffee, Via, is offered at U.S. and Canadian Starbucks outlets and some other stores. A pack of three Via pouches costs $2.95. Schultz called Via “not just a new product, but a new growth platform for the company.” Starbucks has yet to offer Via outside North America, but the market for instant coffee overseas is robust. Britons drink far more instant than brewed coffee, for example.

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Dunkin’ Donuts Sweetens to St Louis Again Under New Plan

Riya V. Anandwala reports in STLouisToday.com that Dunkin’ Donuts, which pulled out of the St. Louis area in early 2000, is returning early next year with a new strategy for success in the Midwest.
The national chain plans to open its doors to more franchise owners with fewer stores. Under the strategy, not only could franchisees agree to standard 10- to 12-store deals, but they also could agree to two- to four-unit contracts

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