mostlycloudy
Thursday July 20th, 2017 6:44PM
1:45PM ( 4 hours ago ) Weather Alert

Subway looking to update stores' not-so-fresh look

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — Subway wants to freshen up the look of its stores as it tries to stem a sales decline.

The sandwich chain says the redesign — which includes a brighter atmosphere, displays of vegetables behind the counter and ordering tablets — is the first major revamp since the early 2000s. The changes will take place as stores around the country are remodeled and new ones are built.

The makeover comes as Subway's sales have fallen for four straight years amid competition from places including Jimmy John's and Firehouse Subs. Since 2012, Subway's average annual sales per store are down 13 percent at $420,000, according to industry tracker Technomic. Last year, its number of U.S. stores also shrank for the first time, though the company says it still has more than 26,200 domestic locations. Globally, the chain says it has more than 44,800.

Don Fertman, Subway's chief development officer, says franchisee agreements require them to remodel stores every seven to 10 years. The company says franchisees will have a variety of design options to pick from, and that it is looking for ways to help them lower costs.

Fertman says the current "Tuscany" design was intended in part to reflect the Italian heritage of founder Fred DeLuca, who died in 2015. His sister, Suzanne Greco, is now CEO of the privately held company.

"It's been working for us since the early 2000s," Fertman said, but noted that it was time to evolve.

In the U.S. and Canada, new stores will be built using the redesign. About 150 stores will get the new look in the coming months, Fertman said. By the end of next year, he said 3,000 to 5,000 stores globally should have it, with most of those being in the United States and Canada. Subway says the stores with new designs will include new menu items, such as bread made without gluten.

Some have reservations about the plans.

John Gordon, a restaurant industry analyst, said Subway might be better off focusing on improving its food before turning to remodeling, given the tight financial situations of many franchisees.

While the company hasn't yet specified the cost, the remodeling looks like it will be pricey for franchisees, notes Keith Miller, who has three Subway stores in Northern California.

Miller, who is also head of the Coalition of Franchisee Associations, said two key questions are whether remodeling would boost sales, and whether franchisees can afford it. If franchisees can't afford it, Miller said it's not really a solution.

"How do you require someone to do something that they can't financially do?" he said.

__

Follow Candice Choi at www.twitter.com/candicechoi

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Subway looking to update stores' not-so-fresh look
Subway looks to update the not-so-fresh look of its stores as the chain's U.S. sales have been declining
10:20AM ( 33 minutes ago )
McDonald's free ice cream promotion marred by app glitch
A McDonald's promotion for free ice cream cones to celebrate National Ice Cream Day went awry over a glitch with the fast food giant's mobile app
10:13AM ( 40 minutes ago )
British royals arrive in Poland at start of a EU visit
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge shook hands with the crowd and gave autographs in Warsaw on Monday, at the start of a goodwill trip to two European Union nations that is intended to underscore Britain's friendly ties with them
10:05AM ( 48 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Brexit talks begin in earnest with citizens' rights in focus
The European Union and Britain kick off their first full session of their divorce proceedings with both sides bent on seeking a quick breakthrough on unraveling ties that have bound them for decades
8:31AM ( 2 hours ago )
Trial set in case of donations for pope's hospital for kids
The Vatican is putting the former president and treasurer of its children's hospital on trial
8:06AM ( 2 hours ago )
Maduro foes: Over 7 million vote in Venezuelan referendum
Venezuelan's opposition said more than 7.1 million people responded to its call to vote in a symbolic rejection of President Nicolas Maduro's plan to rewrite the constitution.
7:13AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Business
A cardinal, a terrace and another scandal for Pope Francis
The Vatican is putting the former president and treasurer of its children's hospital on trial
6:57AM ( 3 hours ago )
Visitation up at Italian museums after reforms
The Culture Ministry says the number of visitors to Italian museums continues to rise two years after reforms that included opening top slots to foreigners for the first time
11:56AM ( 22 hours ago )
Lobbyist who met Trump team says he's not with Russian intel
Russian-American lobbyist who attended a meeting with Trump campaign officials last year denies connections to Russian intelligence
11:43AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Business - Corporate News
McDonald's free ice cream promotion marred by app glitch
A McDonald's promotion for free ice cream cones to celebrate National Ice Cream Day went awry over a glitch with the fast food giant's mobile app
10:13AM ( 40 minutes ago )
British royals arrive in Poland at start of a EU visit
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge shook hands with the crowd and gave autographs in Warsaw on Monday, at the start of a goodwill trip to two European Union nations that is intended to underscore Britain's friendly ties with them
10:05AM ( 48 minutes ago )
Coach AI: Iverson doesn't play in Philly Big3 homecoming
Allen Iverson walked onto a familiar court to a rousing ovation and then took an unfamiliar spot on the sideline
9:37AM ( 1 hour ago )
UN reports rise in Afghan war deaths, blames insurgents
A U.N. report says Afghanistan's protracted war killed a record number of civilians during the first six months of this year, blaming the majority of the deaths on bombings by insurgents
9:31AM ( 1 hour ago )
At least 8 killed in blast at mosque in northeastern Nigeria
At least 8 killed in blast at mosque in northeastern Nigeria; 4 suicide bombers also dead
9:13AM ( 1 hour ago )