Dunkin Donuts switching focus to beverages

Canton, Mass.  -- As part of a brand overhaul, Dunkin’ Donuts is switching its focus from doughnuts and baked goods to coffee and other beverages. At this week’s annual consumer conference hosted by investment banking firm Jeffries, Paul Carbone, CFO of parent company Dunkin’ Brands Group, said beverages accounted for 58% of sales at U.S. franchise locations last year.

“We are a beverage company,” Carbone said. “Fred the Baker is not coming back.”

Dunkin’ Donuts seeks to double its current U.S. store count to 15,000 in the next few years. Much of this expansion will take place in the western U.S., where Starbucks dominates, with California as a major target. The retailer expects to start opening stores in California in 2015. A new national media campaign will emphasize beverages rather than food.

Dunkin’ Donuts has also been recently rolling out “café-style” store redesign that includes a new, earth-toned palette, to make its locations resemble those of rival Starbucks, according to Bloomberg. The retailer has opened 90 remodeled stores to date, according to the report, and plans to open about 600 by the end of this year.