Quick-serve corporate offices generally dictate cobranding partnerships. But, as in Arturo Zindel’s case, sometimes a franchisee’s passion for another brand motivates the executive team to agree to new partnership opportunities.
Zindel, a Jamba Juice franchisee, plans to open five cobranded stores with Bruegger’s Bagels.
“We were searching for different concepts to present to Jamba, because when you’re a franchisee with one of these concepts, they are very [careful with] their brand, and they want to make sure their brand is properly represented,” Zindel says. “They will not necessarily allow you to cobrand or to build combo stores with anyone you want.”
Zindel, a seasoned restaurant franchisee who operates 10 Jamba Juice units in South Florida, has previous experience with cobranded stores, having operated many Pizza Hut and KFC cobranded stores in Mexico shopping malls. While operating those stores, he found that sharing back-of-house facilities helped cut costs.
Zindel became interested in Bruegger’s primarily because of the synergies between it and Jamba Juice. He says the concepts not only compliment each other in back-of-house operations, but they also align in terms of their values.
“You can save a little bit in terms of square footage for the store, and you can share some of the back-of-the-house facilities as well—the walk-in freezer and a walk-in cooler,” Zindel says. “We wanted to go with [a brand] that was more along the lines of what Jamba stands for, which is to aspire to healthy living and products that are better for you. Bruegger’s is a very high-quality brand in the bagel business and produces products that go along well with what we stand for.”
Zindel says the brands’ ability to thrive in different dayparts increases consumer traffic and revenue. Bruegger’s is most successful in the morning, while Jamba attributes most of its sales to the mid-afternoon, after-school crowd.
Zindel says the wide variety of menu items between the two concepts should make the cobranded locations a success.
“I think [consumers] are going to love it,” Zindel says. “It should generate incremental sales, and Bruegger’s doesn’t have a presence in this area. So we are pretty much re-introducing the brand to the South Florida area.”
Zindel signed the five-unit cobranding agreement in November and is now searching for the first location in Southeast Florida.
“We’re excited about bringing the Bruegger’s brand to South Florida, we’re excited about building the combo stores, and I totally believe this is something that can be replicated elsewhere,” Zindel says. “We truly believe that it is a win-win situation.”
By Marlee Murphy