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Auntie Anne’s

Auntie Anne’s is a quick-service restaurant concept selling soft pretzels and related items such as pretzel dogs — similar to pigs in a blanket — and pretzel bites. It has a particularly strong presence in airports and malls.

Anne Beiler opened the first Auntie Anne’s in 1988 at a farmer’s market in Downingtown, Pa., and it had grown through franchising to 100 units by 1992. It was purchased by Focus Brands, a portfolio company of Roark Capital, in 2010.

Heather Neary has been the brand’s president since 2015, and since then focused on growing the brand in places other than traditional suburbs, such as university campuses, urban centers and other areas with high foot traffic.

Neary also launched the Pretzels to the People Program which includes dozens of food trucks used to promote its off-premises capabilities, such as catering.

The chain opened its first drive-thru location, co-branded with sister concept Jamba, in Wylie, Texas in May of 2021.

Headquarters: Atlanta

Segment: Quick Service

Restaurant Segment: LSR Dessert/Snack

Number of U.S. Locations: 1,250

2020 Sales: $586.4 million

Annual Growth:

Source: Datassential Firefly 500

CEO: Jim Holthouser

Parent Group: Focus Brands