Cinnabon, Inc. announced March 14 its purchase of Cinnabon bakeries at two Atlanta-area shopping malls from franchise owner HSS Enterprises.

While franchising bakeries worldwide, Cinnabon plans to expand its direct ownership of bakeries in the Atlanta area to showcase the brand to its domestic and international franchise partners. The company relocated its corporate offices last year from Seattle following the acquisition by Atlanta-based AFC Enterprise in October 1998.

“We want to establish Atlanta as Cinnabon’s flagship market and as a place to introduce our domestic and international franchise partners to the brand,” said Gregg Kaplan, president. “We also see a lot of potential to grow the Atlanta territory and are pursuing opportunities to open five additional bakeries by 2001. This agreement was made possible because of HSS Enterprises’ exceptional base of employees at the locations and the company’s commitment to service and product quality.”

Cinnabon began its Atlanta area market expansion late last year with the opening of its bakery in the newly constructed Arbor Place mall in Douglasville, Ga. The first to carry the company’s new prototype design, the Arbor Place store opened in October 1999.

Each of the newly acquired bakeries will undergo remodeling to the new prototype design.

“Upon competition of the remodels, our guests will enjoy new beverage and bakery products which have been successfully test marketed,” said Kaplan.

This week the company is hosting franchise owners from around the world at their annual partners meeting in Atlanta. The attendees represent Cinnabon bakeries in the U.S., Canada, England, Japan, Mexico, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Scotland, Thailand and Venezuela.

Following AFC’s strategy to be the Franchisor of Choice, Cinnabon began franchising in the later part of 1998 and has already signed 388 commitments to double the size of the bakery chain in the next five years. Number one in the cinnamon bakery category, Cinnabon plans to open approximately 100 bakeries around the world in 2000 with first time openings in Germany, Turkey, Puerto Rico, Scotland, Bahrain and Singapore.

The world’s leading cinnamon roll retailer, Cinnabon operates and franchises 398 bakeries worldwide in 41 states and 24 international locations. Founded in Seattle, Cinnabon bakeries operate in high-traffic malls, transportation centers, airports and supermarkets. The bakeries are located in 500-1,500-square-foot areas and serve fresh cinnamon rolls made with special premium cinnamon and topped with sweet, rich, cream cheese-based frosting. Cinnabon also sells Seattle’s Best Coffee in most locations. Cinnabon’s systemwide sales for fiscal year 1999 totaled $150 million. AFC Enterprises is the parent company of Cinnabon and Churchs Chicken, Popeyes Chicken and Biscuits, Seattle Coffee Company and Ultrafryer Systems.

AFC Enterprises is one of the world’s largest operators and franchisers of restaurants, bakeries and cafes with more than 3,400 locations in 27 countries worldwide.

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