A decade or so after exiting the Indianapolis market, North Carolina-based Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corp. appears poised for a return.
The retailer filed plans with the city this month to build a 3,600-square-foot store at 6022 E. 82nd St., just south of Castleton Square Mall.
Plans show that the store would include both indoor and patio seating, along with a drive-thru window. It would also have the chain’s iconic “HOT NOW” window sign, which glows neon red to alert passers-by when a store has just baked a fresh batch of doughnuts.
A PNC Bank branch formerly operated at the 1.76-acre site, and that building will be demolished to make room for the Krispy Kreme.
Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corp. is based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and has a global product and innovation center in Charlotte. The company operates about 1,400 retail shops in 33 countries and sells its doughnuts at some 12,000 grocery stores, convenience stores and other retailers throughout the U.S.
Krispy Kreme’s Indiana presence exists only along the fringes of the state, with one location each in Evansville, Jeffersonville and Mishawaka.
The chain entered the Indianapolis market in 1994 and at one time had multiple stores in the city, including at 6706 E. 82nd St. and at 8707 U.S. 31 South, on the city’s far south side. By 2011, it had closed its local stores.
IBJ reached out to Krispy Kreme for details about when the Castleton store will open and whether other local stores are planned. The company had not responded by the end of the day Tuesday.
But even after it closed its retail stores, Krispy Kreme maintained its local production bakery at 1940 Executive Drive on the city’s west side, where employees make doughnuts that are sold at third-party retailers.
Established in 1937, Krispy Kreme has experienced its ups and downs over the past 20 years, including a major expansion spree and financial troubles.
When it became a publicly held company in 2000, the company had 174 stores, all of them in the U.S. By January 2016 it had nearly 10 times that number: 1,121 stores, most of them outside of the U.S.
By the mid 2000s, the company was straining under its rapid growth at the same time that the low-carb diet craze was at its peak, curbing customer demand for sugary treats. In 2005, the company announced it would be restating several years’ worth of financial reports because it had used improper accounting tactics that overstated the company’s financial performance.
In 2016 Krispy Kreme again went private when it was acquired by Luxembourg-based investment firm JAB Holding Co. JAB’s other investments include retailers Panera Bread, Einstein Bros. Bagels and Caribou Coffee; beverage brands Dr Pepper, Snapple and Canada Dry; and cosmetics brands Cover Girl, Max Factor and Sally Hansen, among others.