St. Louis — The Canadian franchise rights holder of the St.Louis-based Panera Bread Company has announced plans to add up to five new restaurants to the Toronto area within the next few years.Sam Covelli, owner of the Ohio-based Covelli Enterprises, Panera’s largest franchisee with 200 locations in Ohio, bought 19 Panera bakery cafés from Columbus-based Breads of the World last year.
“We had our biggest year ever last year,” Covelli told The Columbus Dispatch, noting that his stores had more than $400 million in sales. “What other company can say that in this economy?”
The Panera Bread Company reported revenue rose 18 per cent to US$742.3 million for the six-month, period ended June 29.
There are currently three Panera locations in Toronto and a fourth in St. Catherines, Ont.