For the second time this year Hamra Enterprises, a nationwide, family-owned, restaurant operator headquartered in Springfield, Mo., has announced a major expansion, with the acquisition of two dozen Panera Bread cafés in the Deep South.

“Thanks to a quality team dedicated to guest service and excellence, Hamra Enterprises has experienced phenomenal growth over the past year, which has enabled us to grow our family and the communities we serve,” says Mike Hamra, president and CEO of Hamra Enterprises. “We are excited to be adding 24 locations that were developed by another great Panera Bread owner who has been a Panera Bread franchisee for 24 years, and I am excited to have the employees of CSC join our team and looking forward to supporting them in their business to serve guests and the communities they do business in.” 

Hamra Enterprises will be acquiring the new Panera locations from CSC Investments, which represents Hamra’s first restaurants in Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana and adds to Hamra’s existing 12 locations in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Hamra Enterprises will now own and operate 195 restaurants in 11 states, which includes 98 Wendy’s and 7 Noodles & Company restaurants, and now 90 Panera Bread cafés.

Hamra Enterprises will now operate in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Mississippi, New Hampshire, and Tennessee. With the change in ownership, over 800 CSC employees will transition to Hamra Enterprises, increasing the Hamra employment base to more than 7,400.

The owners of CSC Investments, Dan Cooke and Tom Krings are excited for the future of the team they have built over the past 24 years. “We have an environment at CSC Investments where dignity and respect for our teams has been the cornerstone of our core beliefs and Hamra Enterprises has an equally impressive “people first” culture that aligns with what we created in our organization so it’s an amazing fit and easy transition for our teams to join Hamra Enterprises,” says Dan Cooke, President of CSC Investments.

The acquisition of the 24 Panera Bread cafés from CSC comes on the heels of an agreement reached in May, with Hamra Enterprises announcing plans to open 24 Caribou Coffee locations in Missouri. This is in addition to the opening of two new Wendy’s locations in Missouri, also this year.

“At Hamra Enterprises we pride ourselves in being a people-forward organization, with initiatives and programs where people are fully supported and thrive professionally and personally. And that, I believe, has contributed directly to our success,” Hamra adds. “This is an exciting time for Hamra Enterprises. We look forward to what the future holds.”

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, Franchising, News, Panera Bread