Schlotzsky’s headed for Stillwater

By Ricky O’Bannon

For Bryan & Mia Whitfield, doing what you love means getting into the business of sandwiches.

Stillwater was once home to the sandwich chain Schlotzsky’s, and Bryan said he and his wife fell in love with the brand. Once it closed, that wouldn’t stop the family from driving for an hour or more to satisfy cravings for what he called a very “unique sandwich.”

“We would get the whole family together and drive to the Oklahoma City or Tulsa area for Schlotzsky’s,” Whitfield said.

The couple have lived in Stillwater since 1989 after moving back to the city where they graduated from Oklahoma State University. Earlier this month, the Whitfields signed a franchise agreement with the company to open six Schlotzsky’s stores in Oklahoma, including one in their hometown.

Whitfield said he plans on opening the Stillwater location by the end of 2012 before later opening stores in Owasso, Enid, Lawton, Bartlesville and Ardmore.

The Stillwater location has a tri-branding deal, meaning it will also offer Cinnabon products and Carvel, an ice cream brand that has traditionally been offered on the East Coast.

“That allows us three draws instead of one,” he said. “You’ve got folks who are very passionate about Cinnabon who might be introduced to Schlotzsky’s for the first time and (vice versa).”

Whitfield said the location of the store is still being finalized. The restaurant will employ approximately 45 people in Stillwater.

After word got out about the chain coming back, Whitfield said, he’s heard from a number of people who told him they were happy to see Schlotzsky’s in Stillwater again.

“We weren’t the only ones who had a passion for the sandwich, ” he said. “We’re obviously very excited at the response so far, and we’re very excited to bring this to Stillwater.”

Source: Stillwater NewsPress

Franchise agreement will bring Schlotzsky’s to Bartlesville

By Abigail Singrey

asingrey@examiner-enterprise.com

Plans are in the works for a new Schlotzsky’s in Bartlesville, but the grand opening will not be this year.

Regional developers Bryan and Mia Whitfield of Stillwater plan to open six Schlotzsky’s in Stillwater, Bartlesville, Owasso, Enid, Lawton and Ardmore. The Whitfields signed a multi-unit franchise agreement with Schlotzsky’s, which also included a co-branding agreement with Cinnabon and Carvel.

A Schlotzsky’s restaurant typically employs around 45 people and occupies about 3,200 square feet, Bryan Whitfield said.

The Whitfields were targeting communities where Schlotzky’s would be a “unique offering,” Bryan Whitfield said.

“We live in Stillwater, and we kept thinking about how big the demand was in a town the size of Stillwater,” Whitfield said. “… Our business plan will have us developing all of these in the shortest time possible. We are going to start in Stillwater and grow from there.”

The first restaurant will open in Stillwater by the end of the year. The Whitfields have a contract pending on a site. The timing of the opening of the rest of the locations has not been determined, Bryan Whitfield said.

“It will be dictated by where real estate opportunities lead us first,” Bryan Whitfield said.

Opening a restaurant will fulfill a life-long dream for Bryan Whitfield. After working in fast food in high school, he had always wanted to open a restaurant. After a career in electrical and software engineering, the timing was right for Bryan Whitfield to pursue that dream.

“Our love for Schlotzsky’s has been a primary driving factor,” he said.

Schlotzsky’s has more than 350 locations worldwide and serves a variety of items, including sandwiches, wraps, gourmet pizzas and salads.

Source: Bartlesville Examiner-Enterprise

Schlotzsky’s plans restaurant in Stillwater

By Austin Chappell

Restaurant enthusiasts in Stillwater can rejoice as another new dining option is in the process of being developed.

Plans were announced Wednesday to open a Schlotzsky’s in Stillwater, with residents Bryan and Mia Whitfield leading the development process. Bryan and Mia were both unavailable for comment on the announcement.

The Enid News Eagle reported the restaurant could open within the next year. The Whitfields will also open locations in Enid, Owasso, Lawton, Bartlesville and Ardmore, according to the News Eagle.

Derrick May, a business senior, said he was thrilled at the thought of a Schlotzsky’s opening in Stillwater.

“I’ve been going to Schlotzsky’s for as long as I can remember,” May said. “I haven’t gone as much recently because they’ve closed some of the locations in Dallas, but Stillwater sounds like a prime spot with all the college students.”

The announcement came as Olive Garden and Fuzzy’s Taco Shop are in development, and Jimmy John’s and Cheezies Pizza both opened within the past year.

Schlotzsky’s, a sandwich-centered restaurant, will compete with Subway and Jimmy John’s, among others. The restaurant also offers various pizza combinations, as well as pasta, soup and salad.

May said he believes Schlotzsky’s can thrive in Stillwater, depending on the location.

“There are already like two or three Subway’s in Stillwater already, but the one closest to campus is always the most popular,” he said. “If Schlotzsky’s can build or open up in the same area, I could really see a lot of students going there for lunch.”

The Austin-based joint boasts more than 160 locations, with 11 Oklahoma locations scattered across the Oklahoma City and Tulsa areas.

Source: The Daily O’Collegian

Schlotzsky’s to open new restaurants in Oklahoma

Schlotzsky’s has announced that it has signed a multi-unit franchise agreement with regional developers Bryan and Mia Whitfield to open six new locations throughout Oklahoma in Stillwater, Owasso, Enid, Lawton, Bartlesville, and Ardmore.

The new restaurants will feature the brand’s Lotz Better look, which includes a newly designed restaurant, a co-branding deal with Cinnabon and Carvel and a new service model where crew members deliver food to the tables.

The Whitfield’s plan to open the first restaurant in Stillwater later this year.

“Schlotzsky’s has been a favorite in our family for more than two decades,” said Bryan. “We’re all die-hard Schlotzsky’s fans, so you can imagine how excited we are to bring the restaurants closer to home and back to Stillwater.”

With more than 350 locations worldwide, Schlotzsky’s continues its growth momentum by aggressively targeting markets throughout Texas, Atlanta, Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., Denver, Orlando, Tampa and Miami, Fla., Kansas City, Mo., Nashville, Phoenix and St. Louis.

Source: Fast Casual

More than a sandwich, Schlotzsky’s is a place to bring the whole family

By Peggy Laizure

The Moore American

MOORE — Moore High School graduate David Jones was working for PepsiCo in Texas when they wanted him to transfer to New York. He was homesick and ready to try something else.

“I came back because I love Moore,” Jones said.

Jones looked at Popeye’s and CiCi’s Pizza but couldn’t sell something that he didn’t think he could eat every day.

Once the decision was made, Jones worked at a couple of Schlotzsky’s for 18 months to “see what they were doing right, what they were doing wrong and how we can improve.”

Jones moved his family back to Moore on Dec. 11, 2010. He opened the Schlotzsky’s and Cinnabon at 631 SW 19th St. on June 4. He has employed 50 people in the area and will continue to grow this number as he opens five more stores in Oklahoma City, Edmond, Yukon and Midwest City. A percentage of coffee sales will go to the local Habitat for Humanity.

Chris Jones, David’s wife, works at the restaurant as do his three daughters and son.

“When you walk in you will see a family member,” David Jones said.

Jones has four children who attend Moore schools and the University of Oklahoma and wants to invest in the young kids of the area and help grow a safe environment for them to learn and develop. He displays high school art at the restaurant and has built a long hallway for the art.

“My children are learning the value of hard work and how to interact with people,” Jones said. “They are learning a skill and you can’t buy that.”

And he treats his customers like family and realizes there is more to running a successful business than great food. He said you also have to have a good atmosphere.

“Our customers are No. 1; associates, No. 2; and we are No. 3,” he said. “People don’t eat at home anymore. This might be the only time they will have an opportunity today to sit down and eat with their kids and family.”

And Jones believes in his product.

“Our sandwiches are so incredible,” he said. “You can’t replace the bread.”

Besides the sandwiches and Cinnabon, Jones sells made-to-order salads, cookies, soup, cakes and pizza.

“Our pizza is different because we make it with the same sourdough bread as our sandwiches,” Jones said.

You won’t find a sandwich warmer or already made up salads at Schlotzsky’s and Cinnabon. When a customer orders, the kitchen starts.

The restaurant opens at 10 a.m. but employees come in at 5 a.m. to cut vegetables and “bake the bread from the yeast up,” Jones said.

“You will never come to my restaurant and find prepackaged food,” he said. “I may lose some business because we’re not quick enough but that’s OK.”

His pizza goal is to have the drive-through order ready within four minutes.

“We want you to have an enjoyable experience,” Jones said. “We have a great product, wonderful atmosphere and wonderful employees. This is a designation, not just a sandwich.”

Source: The Moore American

Schlotzsky’s-Cinnabon in Moore, OK opens today!

We are open in Moore! We have sandwiches, wraps, salads and Cinnabon! Stop by and enter to win an iPad and a life-size statue of Yoda from Star Wars. Quite the Schlotzsky’s fan, he is!

 

631 SW 19th Street, Moore, OK

 

Schlotzsky’s goes for triple-brand score in midtown

The company behind seven Oklahoma Schlotzsky’s restaurants opened a tri-branded Schlotzsky’s on the northeast corner of 41st Street and Yale Avenue on March 7, with plans to bring five more stores to the Tulsa market by 2011.

“We’ve been looking for a location in this area since 1996,” said Shane Ramsey, director of operations at the new Schlotzsky’s.

With his family and partners J.J. Ramsey and Tina Harris, Ramsey also heads up RAM-Z LLC, the company that operates the other seven Schlotzsky’s restaurants, including three in the Tulsa area.

The new location reflects the recent rebranding of the deli sandwiches chain, which is often co-branded with the Cinnabon and Carvel concepts, all of which are products of Atlanta-based operator and franchisor FOCUS Brands. These new stores are dubbed the “Lotz Better” Schlotzsky’s locations.

On the menu are 15 sandwiches, all served on round buns that supply the basis for what Ramsey called “bun humor,” a theme in the rebranding of the fast-casual concept that he said brings fun to the atmosphere.

“We were the first Schlotzsky’s to do a million (dollars a year in revenue),” Ramsey said. “In our first year, we did $1.2 million. Now, the plan is to increase volume at this new store to $2 million.”

Breakfast sandwiches, wraps, gourmet pizzas, salads and soups are on the menu, too. Cinnamon rolls from Cinnabon and soft-serve ice cream from Carvel round out the breakfast and dessert options, allowing the new concept to offer all three meals — the only Schlotzsky’s to do so.

Construction on the restaurant, which measures 3,100 SF and offers a 66-seat patio, began late last year. Ramsey said he has already hired 80 for the opening, three times the staff at his other stores.

Schlotzsky’s continues to target markets in the southern, south-central and western U.S., where the company seeks deals with multiunit developers. With 350 locations now in operation worldwide, Schlotzsky’s president Kelly Roddy said in a release that he plans to open as many as twice that number of stores by 2015.

Ramsey said he’s looking to expand his own holdings in the Schlotzsky’s brand by five stores within the next four years.

“We’ve been looking in west Tulsa, Catoosa, Claremore and downtown Tulsa,” Ramsey said.

Hours at the new Schlotzsky’s location in Tulsa are 6 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week.

Source: Tulsa Business