Dunkin’ Donuts‘ (DNKN) name might conjure thoughts of, well, doughnuts … but the company would rather you thought of coffee instead.
The company has been shifting its corporate image toward beverages for the better part of a decade, hoping to compete with coffee shop leader Starbucks (SBUX). At a recent investment conference, Dunkin’s CFO Paul Carbone made that official, declaring: “We are a beverage company,” Forbes notes.
And the numbers support his statement. Last year, beverage sales — including coffee — accounted for 58% of sales at U.S. franchise Dunkin’ locations.
Dunkin’ hopes to leverage its new beverage-focused identity as it expands into western states. The company will highlight beverages in new national media ads.
High on Dunkin’s list of expansion targets is California. The company has been running beverage-focused ads in the Golden State since 2010, even though its first location isn’t planned to open there until 2015.
Earlier this week, Dunkin’ announced that it will roll out gluten-free cinnamon-sugar donuts and blueberry muffins to its 7,400 locations around the country later this year.
Shares of Dunkin’ slipped fractionally in Friday morning trading.