Panera: Catering is ‘big business opportunity’

Panera Bread Co. plans to beef up its off-premises sales with catering, to begin milking meaningful data from its loyalty program and to expand its drive-thru units selectively, executives told analysts Friday.

In addition, Panera will be adding steak as a sandwich protein for the first time in a hot-sandwich push in the second quarter, according to William W. Moreton, Panera’s chief executive and president, who spoke on a conference call Friday, a day after the bakery-café

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