Five brands financed under the Sun Capital Partners portfolio announced a partnership that will see them collectively pursue nontraditional locations around the U.S.

Bruegger’s Bagels, Fazoli’s, Friendly’s Ice Cream, Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill, and Timothy’s of the World joined forces to increase their presence in airports, universities, hospitals, and other nontraditional spots.

“We’re trying to pursue as many of the best locations as we can find in our target markets, whether it’s for one brand in [an] airport, or the opportunity for three, four, five of the brands to go in collectively,” says Bruegger’s vice president of franchise development Chris Cheek, who is helping to spearhead the project.

As part of the strategic development program, the companies can leverage the efficiencies and personnel of each brand in order to appeal to nontraditional and concessionaire opportunities. The brands can be bundled together as a combination of multiple nameplates, or simply use the resources of the other brands to find a single-brand unit.

“Given the fact that a key component of this business is building relationships, we at Bruegger’s have spent now three years building the good relationships, the right relationships that the additional brands that are now in the portfolio can take advantage of,” Cheek says.

Bruegger’s was the first brand in the Sun Capital portfolio, and the first to look into nontraditional locations, which it started doing about three years ago. The relationship with the other brands will help those brands walk through the doors that Bruegger’s has already opened in the nontraditional sector.

“It dramatically reduces the learning curve that for us was pretty steep,” Cheek says. “By creating this portfolio of brands, we can leverage both time efficiencies and relationship-building efficiencies across all the brands.”

By Sam Oches

News, Bruegger's, Fazoli's