Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc. announced last week that it plans to add at least 50 overseas stores in 2009, with definite plans to enter new markets in Turkey, China and Malaysia.

Jeff Welch, Krispy Kreme’s senior vice president and president of global franchise operations and development, said the stores in mainland China, Turkey and Malaysia will open in late spring or summer and will represent the company’s first locations in those markets.

He said franchise agreements are in place, and the stores likely will be around 2,500 square feet and employ about 100 workers, depending on how the amount of traffic from customers.

So far, franchise agreements are not in place for other overseas stores, but Krispy Kreme plans to add stores in countries such as Australia, Japan, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait. Welch said those stores could range from kiosks to as much as 2,500 square feet.

The company is planning a total of 50 to 60 overseas stores this year, but Welch said that number could grow if other interested franchisees emerge.

The company opened 114 overseas stores in the previous year and announced last year plans to enter Malaysia, China and Turkey. It’s in 15 countries so far, including Hong Kong, Indonesia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates.

As part of its expansion efforts, employees from Krispy Kreme locations in Japan, where it opened its first store more than two years ago, visited the Stratford Road store in Winston-Salem earlier Tuesday to learn more about the company and the region.

The Winston-Salem-based company announced in December a net loss of $5.9 million in the third quarter, compared with a net loss of $798,000 in the year-ago period. Revenue was down 8.7 percent, to $94.3 million, in the third quarter, compared to a year ago.

The Business Journal Greensboro/Winston-Salem