Dale Hellenbrand

Dale Hellenbrand

Culver’s franchisee shares path to ownership

Operator launches program to help talented managers become restaurant owners

Dale Hellenbrand’s first Culver’s restaurant, in the St. Louis suburb of Arnold, Mo., was flourishing in 2008, its second full year of operation, when the bottom fell out: A new development, with more than 30 restaurants, opened across town.
 
The next year, sales plummeted and profits evaporated. Hellenbrand, who eagerly handed out raises during that second year of business, had to sell his truck to make payroll.
 
“We definitely had our struggles,” said Hellenbrand,

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