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“Our success in 12 other countries outside the U.S. proves that Auntie Anne’s freshly baked soft pretzels and other delicious menu items are a hit with consumers around the world,” says President and CEO Sam Beiler. “International expansion is a key component to our growth plans, and we are thrilled to be adding Honduras and Greece as the newest countries to our system.”
The first Honduras location was opened on October 5, 2007, in Tegucigalpa by franchisee PD Pretzel Central America S.A., managed by New Hampshire resident Paul Delisle, his wife Rosa and brother-in-law, Mario Zavala. Delisle has already successfully developed a number of video rental stores in the country’s capital, Tegucigalpa, with his Honduran family, and plans to channel the senior managers into the Auntie Anne’s franchise. PD Central America S.A. has signed an agreement to open six Auntie Anne’s locations over the next five years.
Honduras is the second country in Central and South America that Auntie Anne’s has opened a store in since expanding into the market in 2000 with the opening of a store in Venezuela.
Wrap Factory South Ltd., owned by Greek restaurant operator Dimitrios Chatzis, will open the first Auntie Anne’s in Greece on November 7, 2007 in The Mall Athens. Over the next five years Chatzis plans to open a total of five locations, primarily in the cities of Athens and Salonica. Greece marks the second country in the European Union that Auntie Anne’s has expanded into, joining the United Kingdom, which has been part of the system since 2002.
Auntie Anne’s has opened 52 new stores to date in 2007, and has plans to open more than 20 before the end of the year. In addition to Honduras and Greece, the Pennsylvania-based franchisor’s 935 stores span the U.S., South Korea, Singapore, Philippines, Malaysia, Venezuela, United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, England and Taiwan.