Duck Donuts Builds International Presence With Philippines Deal

Duck Donuts CEO Betsy Hamm discovered something universal about people as the brand has grown throughout the globe.

“Everyone loves sweet, warm and fresh donuts,” Hamm said. “The fact that we’re able to deliver that, and that it’s different than what they’re used to, makes us confident that it will do well in international communities.”

That confidence led Duck Donuts to expanding internationally, with the latest overseas development deal signed in the Philippines. The agreement, for 25 locations throughout the country over six years, is with entrepreneur and lawyer Edilberto Bravo through his company Bravo Best Foods.

Bravo brings decades of business experience to the venture, having co-founded U-Bix, a printer sales and distribution company that also provides digital document services, in 1974. He entered the hospitality space more recently, starting Bravo Best Foods in 2008.

The first concept developed under that label was a coffee brand, Caffe Appassionato, followed by the Italian restaurant Grappas Ristorante. Bravo said the latest opportunity came about from a colleague’s recommendation who tried the product in California.

“I saw the potential of Duck Donuts when I first heard about it,” Bravo said. “It is the only donut chain capable of selling bespoke donuts in the country. It is a unique experience in itself. More than selling donuts, it sells the experience of eating your own unique donut.”

Bravo is the latest in a string of global partners joining the Duck Donuts system recently, said Hamm.

“We have been growing internationally the last several years, primarily in the Middle East,” Hamm said. “As that growth has occurred, it has really helped our brand awareness across the globe.”

In total, Duck Donuts has 145 locations in 25 states and Puerto Rico, as well as Canada, Egypt, Pakistan, Qatar and Thailand. The latest opening was in Thailand, which is where Hamm met the Bravo team and found a partner.

“We were able to meet and talk about what growth could look like in the Philippines,” Hamm said. “Building a brand is hard, especially when you’re doing it 4,000 miles away. That’s why it’s so important that we partner with the right franchisees who have the resources and know the market. “That’s what makes Bravo a great candidate,” she said. “He has such a vast experience in business. He understands the importance of having the right structure and a good team in place. He has an aggressive plan on which he plans to open and he has the right people around him.”’

Bravo said his plan is to develop the 25 stores throughout the nation, with the two expected to be open by the end of the year. He said so far, the franchisor has been a great ally in getting the brand off the ground.“They ensure a seamless knowledge transfer and sharing to their franchisees,” Bravo said. “Duck Donuts is not only committed to delighting customers with its products and services, but also prioritizing community engagement and giving back to customers and employees.”

SOURCE: Franchise Times 

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