Jamba inks refranchising deal for Denver

Chain close to goal of selling more than 150 corporate stores

Moving closer to surpassing its goal of refranchising 150 stores before the end of the year, Jamba Inc. said Wednesday it signed an agreement to sell 15 Jamba Juice units in Denver to existing franchisees.

Scott Maltz, David Wagonfeld and Larry Kaufman have agreed to add the 15 Denver stores to their portfolio, which already includes 15 Jamba Juice locations in Central California, Jamba said.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it is expected to close by the end of the fourth quarter.

The three franchisees joined the Jamba Juice system in February with the purchase of eight stores in Fresno, Calif.  The group later added seven stores in the Chico-Redding market.

The recent agreement would bring their location total to 30. In addition, the three have committed to further expansion by developing four more locations in Colorado.

“Jamba Juice has a very strong health-and-wellness platform and continues to innovate with new better-for-you food and beverage offerings that truly position them as a leading healthy, active lifestyle brand," Maltz said in a statement. "It is a testament to our belief in the Jamba brand that we have chosen to invest in our third market with Jamba Juice.”

Emeryville, Calif.-based Jamba Inc. operates or franchises 743 locations, 432 of which are company owned.

In October, the company announced plans to sell 41 corporate stores in the Midwest to franchisees, reflecting the largest transaction since the refranchising initiative began in May 2009.

If the Midwest and Colorado deals close as expected this year, the smoothie chain will have surpassed its goal of refranchising 150 outlets.

The 150 goal was part of a larger plan to focus corporate operations on core markets within California and New York, with locations outside those regions operated by franchisees.

Contact Lisa Jennings at [email protected] [3].