Panera Bread Case Essay

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Pages: 4

Panera Bread Case Study
Panera Bread is a company that began in 1981. Since then, the restaurant has expanded and became a clear leader of the fast, but casual segment in the restaurant industry. The company’s main strength is that it is a well-recognized brand throughout the United States and Canada. Panera Bread is known for having fresh baked breads that are made from quality ingredients. The company’s food is high-quality but they are able to keep prices that represent a good value. Another key strength for Panera Bread is that they provide an attractive customer service experience that is courteous and efficient at the same time. Between 2007 and 2009, the company managed to acquire Paradise Bakery and Café allowing them to gain even more of the market share. Based on Panera Bread’s financial data, an obvious strength of the company is their strong financial power even through the recession of 2008-2009. The company seems to do well at introducing new varieties of bread and other foods as the seasons change in order to satisfy their consumer’s ever-changing preferences.
Companies always have some weaknesses that need to be improved upon. Panera Bread’s main weakness is that they have a limited number of products offered in only the United States and Canada. Also, the company has strong competition from well-known restaurants like Starbucks, Au Bon Pain, and other local bakeries.
The mentioned weaknesses offer much room for improvement. Panera Bread has the opportunity to extend their product line. This will give their customers more food and drink options, making them more likely to choose Panera Bread over its competitors. Since, Panera Bread is a franchise they always have the opportunity to increase their current locations and open more locations. When opening new locations, the company should consider expanding globally so that Panera Bread can become known world-wide. In today’s society, people are becoming more and more health conscious. Many are even limiting or removing bread from their diet. Therefore, Panera Bread needs to advertise and market itself in a way that appeals to this new demand. For instance, they should use advertising and ingredients that show their food is a healthy alternative of snacking.
This company must make sure that they are aware of environmental threats. Panera Bread has many well-known competitors and this number continues to increase. The recent economic recession caused many of the company’s expansion plans and new product initiatives to slowdown.
Panera Bread’s main core competencies is its non-profit pay-what-you-want bakery-café locations. Their goal was to offer an experience different than that of a soup kitchen, allowing people in the community to leave full with a feeling of self-worth. This type of restaurant offers the same type of dining experience as its typical locations but there are no prices on the menu. Customers are encouraged to pay what they can for their meal and to donate if possible. Panera Bread offers bread-baking expertise that allows them to handcraft delicious, fresh bread daily. The food at this restaurant is served in an inviting atmosphere that is not rushed and hectic like in a typical fast food restaurant. These factors contribute to Panera Bread’s distinctive competency.
This company has many components in its value chain. They offers extensive training and market analysis to ensure that activities and costs are always at the efficient level. For instance, Panera Bread has a universal system that every store uses so that each store does not have to develop a system to use. This resulted in a huge cost reduction for every store. The company’s food is regularly reviewed to ensure that products match up with current customer demand. The management of Panera Bread ensures that distribution is kept efficient. Every location purchases dough directly from Panera Bread. There are Panera Bread dough making facilities…