Dunkin' Donuts poised for UK return

Dunkin DonutsDunkin' Donuts is to make a return to Britain 20 years after it first tried to break into the UK market.

The US chain has agreed deals with two franchise partners to launch 50 restaurants in London over the next five years, with talks ongoing over a possible further 100 branches across the UK.

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Giorgio Minardi, president of Dunkin' Brands International, said: "We feel there is significant opportunity for Dunkin' Donuts in the UK, and we have had a tremendous response from potential franchisees interested in developing the brand across the country."

The move would see Dunkin' Donuts have another go at cracking the UK after it pulled out in the mid-1990s.

Its parent group, Dunkin' Brands, already runs ice cream chain Baskin-Robbins in the UK, which now has 100 locations across Britain, including free-standing restaurants as well as concession locations in other shops and cinemas.

Dunkin' Donuts currently has more than 10,500 restaurants in 31 countries around the world, including more than 100 locations across Europe in Bulgaria, Germany, Russia and Spain.

Under the leadership of regional general manager Jim Johnstone, its UK restaurants will offer coffees, teas, espresso-based drinks, frozen drinks, doughnuts, muffins, croissants and sandwiches, as well as a regional menu to cater to British tastes.

Store openings will initially focus on north and east London through franchise partners Court Group, chaired by David Sheepshanks, and DDMG, which is a partnership of US and UK franchisees.

Mr Sheepshanks is the co-founder of Suffolk Foods and former chairman of Ipswich Town Football Club.

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