It's Not All About The Donut: Krispy Kreme Opens A Store Starbucks-Style in North Carolina

Dec 17, 2015 10:00 AM EST | By Alexis Villarias

Krispy Kreme is about to up their game to keep its sales afloat. The company unveiled a brand new story that bears more resemblance to Starbucks than the typical donut shop.

It is clear though that Krispy Kreme doesn't exactly want to be Starbucks. However, it draws inspiration from coffee shops for its future store concepts reports Business Insider.

The new location in Clemmons, North Carolina was opened last October and it was designed like a coffee shop complete with vintage designs, natural wood, free WiFi with plenty of power outlets and a whole new ordering system and seating arrangement. The company hopes this will encourage the customers to linger.

The store redesign is a major step for Krispy Kreme as it shifts its focus to coffee. CEO Tony Thompson believes that they can double the current coffee sales of 5 percent.

"We love to hear, 'We used to go to Starbucks, but this is pretty cool too,'" says Thompson on customers, especially younger ones, he meets at the Clemmons concept shop. "[Krispy Kreme is] not trying to go be a Starbucks. What we want out of this is, people are coming for the donut. We want to attach [coffee]."

The traditional ordering system reduces the chance for customers to order coffee with donut so with the new ordering system, ordering donut and coffee is finally linked. POS systems are now set up at the donut cases. Krispy Kreme is trying to implement the new ordering system at a number of existing locations as well as the new ones.

More so, the company is thinking of adding a barista and a manual espresso machine.

"To really address coffee, you've got to do more than just have a new menu item, or just some new news," says Thompson. "You need to have the overall experience be about coffee."

However, the company doesn't want to exclude its long-time customers as well. It has maintained the signs that most people associate with Krispy Kreme.

Ultimately, the new store design is to make coffee a common add-on and provide more reason for customers to come back, not transform Krispy Kreme into a coffee shop. Donuts will always be the "center of the plate" for Krispy Kreme.

Do you think adapting a Starbucks-style in Krispy Kreme stores will increase sales? Let us know your thoughts by leaving your comments below.

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