Panera Bread - Case Analysis
June 10, 2010
Panera Bread, also called St. Louis Bread Company was founded in 1981. Rated high as a bakery-café restaurant, they serve a variety of breads, soups, and salads. Panera is considered a “quick casual” restaurant offering sit-down dining and catering services. Panera Bread is now a publicly traded company with over 70 locations in 10 states and
Company highlights include:
* As reported by The Wall Street Journal, Panera Bread scored the highest level of customer loyalty among quick-casual restaurants, according to research conducted by TNS Intersearch.
* J.D. Power and Associates’ 2004 restaurant satisfaction study of 55,000 customers ranked Panera Bread highest among quick-services restaurants in the Midwest and Northeast regions of the United States in all categories, which included environment, meal, service, and cost.
* In 2005, for the fourth consecutive year, Panera Bread was rated among the best of 121 competitors in the Sandleman & Associates national customer satisfaction survey of more than 62,000 consumers. Panera Bread had also won “best of “ awards in nearly every market across 36 states.
(Thompson, Strickland & Gamble, 2010, C-8)
Panera Bread now faces unique characteristics as found in emerging markets including:
* Speculation about how it will function, how fast it will grow, and how big it will get * No consensus regarding which product attributes will prove decisive in winning buyer favor * Because Panera Bread is in an emerging industry, all buyers are first-time users. Therefore the primary marketing task is “induce initial purchase and to overcome customer concerns about product features, performance reliability, and conflicting claims of rival firms”. (Thompson, Strickland & Gamble, 2010, C-8) * Strong learning/experience curve effects may be present
* Trouble securing ample supplies of raw materials and components * Finding themselves short of funds to support needed R&D and get through several lean years until the product catches on, end up merging with competitors or being acquired by financially strong outsiders looking to invest in a growth market.
The mission of Panera Bread is to get “a loaf of bread in every arm” and this is being done by “making great bread broadly available to consumers across America.” The company not only bakes more bread each day than any bakery-café concept in the country, but they also provide a welcoming environment that is hard to forget. Panera
Bread’s products include:
* fresh baked goods
* made-to-order sandwiches on freshly baked breads
* custom roasted coffees
* other café beverages
Panera Bread’s primary market includes “urban workers and suburban dwellers looking for a quick service meal and a more aesthetically pleasing dinning experience than that offered by a traditional fast food restaurants (Thompson, Strickland & Gamble, 2010)”.
* Fresh dough-making capabilities (better product quality than rivals) * Majority of bakeries-cafes offer free WIFI
* Offer a healthier option than most fast food restaurants * Distinctive menu, signature café design, inviting ambience, operating systems, and unit location strategy (Thompson, Strickland & Gamble, 2010, C-8) * 20+ varieties of bread baked fresh throughout the day at each café location (Thompson, Strickland & Gamble, 2010, C-8) * Panera Bread donates left over breads to churches for no/low income families and individuals
* Prices tend to be higher than the majority of fast food restaurants
* Expanding on the option of beverages to include calorie free and/or sugar free syrups * Expanding favors of coffees offered such as caramel, hazel nut, and mocha * Incorporating breakfast...
References: Thompson, A. A, Jr., Strickland III, A. J., & Gamble, J. E. (2009). Crafting & Executing Strategy (7th ed). New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
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