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Say bye-bye to Krispy Kreme

The Krispy Kreme franchise is exiting Houston next month. For now, anyway.

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts is exiting the Houston market after reaching an agreement with its Houston franchisee, Lone Star Doughnuts.

The five Houston-area stores will cease operations on March 8, as will the location in Beaumont.

Lone Star Doughnuts said Thursday that it will launch its own brand of doughnuts as soon as Krispy Kreme closes. And Krispy Kreme said it plans to reopen stores in Houston, but didn’t say when.

Lone Star’s new brand, Jumbles Dough Factory & Coffee Bar, will be in the same six locations, selling doughnuts, kolaches and coffee beverages in a softer setting, said Dan Brinton, Lone Star’s chief operating officer.

My place of employment was primarily a Shipley’s shop in the pre-Krispy days. Once in awhile you’d see a Dunkin Donuts box, but for the most part if someone brought donuts to work, they were from Shipley’s. Once Krispy Kreme entered the scene, however, that was just about all you ever saw. It was a near-total takeover. Which is a bit funny, now that I think of it, because there are at least two Shipley’s locations near my office and no Krispys, at least according to the included map. I think on the whole I preferred Krispy Kreme, though there are some specific donuts that I think Shipley’s does better. Houstonist begs to differ, while Sue is not happy about this at all.

Not that this has any bearing on the situation at hand, which has to do with a nasty franchisee lawsuit. Tom’s been following all this – his posts on the subject are here. I just like donuts. So there.

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14 Comments

  1. Sue says:

    There are few things in this world that are finer than a hot, fresh original glazed. Except maybe one of their chocolate-iced cream filled donuts when it’s nice and hot.

    Mmmmm…..donuts. Is there anything they can’t do?

  2. Kent says:

    Personally I could never eat Krispy Kreme, at least not the original glazed. They always tasted overly sweet and under-cooked. The sour creme old-fashioned I could tolerate a but easier. But then my wife loved those gooey originals. It always seemed to me that women were more obsessed with Krispy Kreme than men. Is there something in the recipe that makes women crazy? I remember when the opened in Seattle a couple years ago when I was there on a business trip and there were huge ridiculous lines out front. They’re just donuts for Pete’s sake.

    One thing though, they did have good coffee. Best drip coffee in Waco, at least that I could find and that most definitely includes the various Starbucks around here.

    The Krispy Kreme in Waco also closed recently. It was in a rather odd location, at least for me. I never passed it on the place to anywhere on the routes through town that I would usually drive so I never dropped in. On the other hand, there’s a Shipley’s on the edge of town that I have to pass to get anywhere including drop the kids off at school. So we mostly go there. I always liked Shipley’s better anyway. I like my donuts to have a little more heft and substance.

    Personally I’m more of a bread bakery person in the morning. Given the choice I’d much rather drop into the local Panera for something hot and crusty than anything resembling donuts. Until Panera came to Waco that was what I missed the most about living here compared to Seattle and Juneau–The lack of good bread bakeries.

  3. PDiddie says:

    Is there anything they can’t do?

    They definitely can’t prevent diabetes.

  4. Sue says:

    Kent: My friends and I did refer to the chocolate-iced cream-filled donuts as our PMS cure, so you might be right about them appealing more to women.

    I like donuts, but, yeah, I’d rather have a good bagel first thing in the morning.

  5. RedScare says:

    Having been born and raised in Winston-Salem, I have a special affinity for Krispy-Kreme. KK’s problems are well chronicled, and they stem, not from the product, but from KK straying from it’s conservative North Carolina roots into the 90s American obsession with expanding too rapidly. This lead to numerous problems, from lack of quality control to fancy accounting to paying to much attention to the price of its stock. Sadly, this is not unique to KK.

    Hopefully, they return to their roots, and return to Houston as well.

  6. Dalicious says:

    Good riddance. I always found KK offensive, perhaps because I saw them for the first time at the coffee shop at Enron. But more than that, they are small and expensive for their size. On a size-for-cost basis, I’d give Shipleys or DD a 70-80% advantage. And I don’t like them! I always thought they put more effort into making them perfect circles than they did at making them taste good.

  7. They hurt my teeth, and I get heartburn if I eat more than one. Other than that they are great.

  8. Ellen says:

    Hmmm…Krispy Kreme just exited Colorado Springs in the past couple months, as well.

  9. Christine says:

    (Hmmm… MT knows I am signed it, it is “greeting” me above in the Typekey line and says so – but it didn’t remember any of my contact info. Strange…)

    Krispy Kreme sucks. Their glazed donuts taste like caramel. Shipleys ROCKS. Deeeeeelicious. So personally, I won’t be sad to see Krispy Kreme go. :)

  10. Christine Missouri says:

    my second visit to Houston where again I can’t locate a KK, so I decided to google it and found all this legal stuff…. sheesh where is free enterprise, and those delicious donuts, I won’t eat donuts anywhere but KK, I miss them being my first stop in Houston as well as many more visits while I’m here. There were one of the many highlights during our stay.

  11. Just add another K... says:

    Not only does the product suck, but the management does as well. As a former employee of this company, it’s run by a “boys” club up top…take a look at their management. How many females/minorities are Directors or higher? There used to be some exceptional VP’s (who happened to be female) but where are they now? Fired? Left the company? Seems a bit suspicious to me. Pay scales are off the charts for directors and above but the workers who bust their asses don’t get credit for their hard work nor the compensation…recent new employees are all “friends and family” of said directors/etc. and they’re positioning themselves to fail. They keep hiring more and more employees in the finance department, however, they STILL can’t get their quarterly’s posted in time…I can’t believe NYSE allows them to keep postponing their numbers.

    Do they really think selling international franchises will work in the long run? Take a look at their opening store sales overseas (and also note that 5 US franchises have gone bankrupt…and counting). They can’t open up stores in the US because of SEC problems so they need a boost to cash flow quickly. Their answer = expand internationally! Get franchising fees + quick bucks from equipment sales out of KKM&D…but they can’t sustain sales of doughnuts which is what will make/break them in the long run. Good luck with that as they don’t even have an international team worth a squat…they were all brought up from the inside and no one has outside international experience (I would think they would have hired someone externally with true international experience). They will never have sales comparable to store openings in 2001-2003 and they’re trying to band-aid their bleeding problems.

  12. The_Case says:

    As a Krispy Kreme fan, it’s really disappointing to see KK pull out of a major market like Houston. Not surprisingly, it was poor management. I have faith, though, that they will be back in Southeast Texas — they’ll just need to learn from their mistakes and get a new franchisee and move on and do the right thing from here on out. Houston wasn’t the only city in Texas that had the KK pullout. Amarillo also lost their only KK location and it is not known if they will have a new one anytime soon. If you KK lovers absolutely need to get a quick fix, you’ll need to go to Austin or San Antonio until H-town gets squared away.

  13. JK says:

    Obviously several posters here have a vested interest in Shipleys (could they be Shipleys managers?).

    It’s simple. People with a big “sweet tooth” love Krispy Kreme, people who don’t, like Shipleys. I personally can’t stand Shipleys. The donuts are too heavy and not sweet enough, and paying a dollar for “dixie cup” of terrible tasting coffee is ridiculous. I fell in love with KK the first day I took a bite. But then again I love sweets…and I’m a guy. Whoever said women love KK more than men is off base. The women in our family like KK, but my elderly father and I LOVE their donuts. It’s a shame to see them go. I regularly drove several miles to KK, right past a Shipley’s half a mile from my house.

  14. Diabetes to go says:

    I remember back in college when my fat-ass roommate and his obese-ass girlfriend kept raving about KK. So I tried one and it made me sick. But it’s no mystery to me why KK is right up their alley.

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