Krispy Kreme is the name of an international chain of doughnut stores that was founded by Vernon Rudolph in 1937 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The parent company of Krispy Kreme is Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc. (NYSE: KKD) and is based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, United States.
While selling assorted types of doughnuts, Krispy Kreme’s signature item is a glazed doughnut that is traditionally served warm. Along with their own Krispy Kreme brand store locations their products are sold in supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, gas stations, Wal-Mart and Target stores in the United States.
Internationally, Loblaws supermarkets and Petro-Canada gas stations in Canada along with BP Service Stations and BP Travel Centres in Australia. In the United Kingdom Tesco supermarkets, Tesco Extra and Moto service stations carry Krispy Kreme products.
The company’s growth was steady prior to its initial public offering but profits have decreased in recent quarters.
Krispy Kreme delivery truck, circa 1939
Krispy Kreme’s founder Vernon Rudolph and his uncle, Ishmael Armstrong, purchased Joseph LeBeouf’s donut shop on Broad Street in Paducah, Kentucky along with a secret recipe for yeast-raised doughnuts in 1933 acquired from a Buffalo NY businessman. Rudolph began selling the yeast doughnuts in Paducah and delivered them on his bicycle. The operation was moved to Nashville, Tennessee and other family members joined to meet the customer demand. Rudolph sold his interest in the Nashville store in 1937 and opened a doughnut shop in Winston-Salem, North Carolina selling to grocery stores and then directly to individual customers. The first store in North Carolina was located in a rented building on South Main Street in Winston-Salem in what is now called historic Old Salem. The Krispy Kreme logo was designed by Benny Dinkins, a local architect.
Expansion occurred in the 1950s, including an early store in Savannah, GA and elsewhere in the southern U.S. By the 1960s, Krispy Kreme was known throughout the southeastern United States, and it began to expand into other areas. In 1976, Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation became a wholly owned subsidiary of Beatrice Foods of Chicago, Illinois. The headquarters for Krispy Kreme remained in Winston-Salem.
A group of franchisees purchased the corporation back from Beatrice Foods in 1982. In 2003, a pilot project in Mountain View, California, to sell doughnuts through car windows and sunroofs at a busy intersection (with wireless payment) failed.
An assortment of doughnuts on display in a shop in Washington, D.C..
On February 19, 2007, Krispy Kreme began selling the Whole Wheat Glazed doughnut in an attempt to appeal to the health conscious. The doughnut has 83.736 kJ (20 kilocalories in most countries, or 20 Calories in the US) fewer than the original glazed (754 kJ vs. 837 kJ) and contains more fiber (2 grams vs. 0.5 grams). As of January 2008, the trans fat content of all Krispy Kreme doughnuts was reduced to 0.5 of a gram or less. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, in its guidelines, allows companies to round down to 0 g in its nutrition facts label even if the food contains as much as 0.5 of a gram per serving. Krispy Kreme benefited from this regulatory rule in its subsequent advertising campaign, touting its doughnuts as “trans fat free” and having “0 grams trans fat!”.
On July 1, 2010, Krispy Kreme introduced a doughnut that included the soft drink Cheerwine, which was to be sold in grocery stores in North and South Carolina during July. The doughnuts proved so popular the Salisbury, North Carolina Krispy Kreme location, in the town where Cheerwine is made, sold them as well, and after July 31, this was the only place to get them. The Cheerwine Kreme doughnut returned for July 2011 and made its debut in Tennessee and Roanoke, Virginia.
Also in 2010, Krispy Kreme Express, a delivery service for businesses, began testing at the Battleground Avenue location in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Krispy Kreme donuts being prepared (high quality)
Krispy Kreme began another phase of rapid expansion in the 1990s, opening stores outside the southeastern United States where most of their stores were located. Then, in December 2001, Krispy Kreme opened its first store outside the U.S. in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, just outside Toronto. Since 2004, Krispy Kreme has rapidly expanded its international operations.
On April 5, 2000, the corporation went public on the NASDAQ using the ticker symbol KREM. On May 17, 2001, Krispy Kreme switched to the New York Stock Exchange, with the ticker symbol KKD, which is its current symbol.
On January 18, 2005, Krispy Kreme announced Stephen Cooper, chairman of financial consulting group Kroll Zolfo Cooper LLC, as interim CEO. Cooper replaces Scott Livengood, who the company said has retired as chairman, president, CEO and a director. The company also named Steven Panagos, a managing director of Kroll Zolfo, as president and COO.
Although based on informal advertising such as word-of-mouth, in 2006, Krispy Kreme moved into television and radio advertisements, beginning with its “Share the Love” campaign with heart-shaped doughnuts.
 International operations
A Krispy Kreme store in Portsmouth, England
Main article: Krispy Kreme operations by country
The first Krispy Kreme store to open outside North America was in Sydney, Australia, in the city of Penrith. At first the operation was successful, opening 53 other stores around the country.[unreliable source?] However as of November 1, 2010 the entire Australian division went into voluntary administration, with media reports attributing this to poor sales. They have since come out of administration as of December 2010, and continued trading, with fewer stores. Besides the stores that Krispy Kreme operate in the United States and Canada, there are also franchise-owned stores in the United Kingdom, Australia, Turkey, Dominican Republic, Kuwait, Mexico, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Hong Kong (2006–2008), Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Ethiopia, and Bahrain.
 Franchise expansions and reductions
 New England