Panera Bread Essay

Decent Essays

The Panera Bread Company was co-founded by Ronald Shaich and Louis Kane, when the two came together and joined the Au Bon Pain and the Cookie Jar bakery and in 1991 they took the company public. In 1993, the co-founders purchased the Saint Louis Bread Company and studied the business plan searching for their successful qualities and find ways to mimic that (Wheelen, Hunger, Hoffman, & Bramford, 2014, p 16-2). Shaich hit the jackpot when he started this fast casual restaurant chain because this was not your normal fast food restaurant. Panera offers coffee, breakfast sandwiches, custom breads and soups and hand tossed salads and has yet to be matched by another company. The décor in their restaurants along with free WiFi created a warm, inviting place for customers. Panera found a way to offer fresh, quality food for a decent price. Their focus on fresh, quality ingredients and healthy options for the entire family, earned Panera the name, “One of the 10 Best Fast-Casual Family Restaurants” by Parents magazine in its July 2009 issue” (Wheelen et al, 2014, p 16-13). Struggling with debt for years, with “bad real estate deals and operational problems,” Panera decided to sell the Au Bon Pain name to an investment firm for $73 million in May of 1999, this is when the company changed its name to Panera Bread Company. The sale left Panera debt free and gave them ability to expand the company. Panera continued to grow throughout the 2000s and now has 1380 stores in

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