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How Kelly and Lee Run Two Top Alberta COBS Bread Bakeries

Update: As of February 1st, 2020, Kelly and Lee have paid off the loans on BOTH of their bakeries. This is a huge achievement, and a testament to the hard work they put into running their businesses. Congratulations, Kelly and Lee!

Kelly and Lee own two COBS Bread bakeries- one in Calgary, and one in Okotoks. They’ve been franchise owners since 2013 and 2014 and since then, they’ve been beating records, earning awards, and demonstrating what it really means to be the favourite community baker.

One of our recent Franchise Profitability Reports highlighted that both of Kelly and Lee’s bakeries are performing in the top quartile when in comes to Operating Profit (OP). For reference, bakeries in the top quartile are making over $250,000 in OP annually. To shed some light on how they accomplished this, we wanted to ask a few questions:

What’s the secret to your success?

Kelly: We’re just dedicated to our business. We’re very hands-on. You simply don’t get the same results if you’re not.

In what way?

Kelly: Several ways! First of all, we work shoulder to shoulder with our staff, and take the time to find the right people to work in our bakeries. Once they’re there, we work closely with them. We take the time to teach them new skills, set goals and work to achieve targets. This inspires them to grow and develop. We’re in constant communication with them so they know that we’re invested.

Secondly, I’m addicted to watching the numbers. Every week, I’m excited to review the bakery results. I’m always thinking, “How did we do this week with this new product?” I’m constantly trying to grow and improve my results and we are always competing against ourselves. We’re driven to improve and keep doing better.

What do you do with your OP?

Kelly: We reinvest our OP back into the bakery. We take a lot of pride in keeping the bakeries maintained, so we spend the money to keep them in great condition.

Lee and I also set goals. We set goals to pay off the loans we used to purchase the bakeries within 5 years, so last year, we paid off the first bakery, and next year, we’re on track to pay off the second bakery!

Which means… we are looking to open a third COBS Bread bakery and plan on opening our Legacy bakery sometime next year!

Congratulations! That’s a huge achievement.

One last question: COBS bakeries Same Store Sales Growth and Transaction Counts exceeded set goals. Was there anything in particular that COBS, as the franchisor, did to help drive traffic into your bakeries?

The whole brand refresh that came out at the beginning of the year is awesome! It’s really fresh, bright and playful and looks great in the bakeries.

A big thank you to Kelly for taking the time to share her insights with us. If you want to join our network of motivated and passionate franchisees, please start something good with COBS Bread by submitting an inquiry today.