TCBY dives into retail with pre-packaged frozen yogurt launch

TCBY has announced a licensing partnership with Spring Creek Holdings for a new line of pre-packaged frozen yogurt, "TCBYGrocery," to be sold at approximately 10,000 stores nationwide including about 3,000 Wal-Mart locations, as well as Super Target, A&P, Stop N Shop, Food Lion and Giant.

Mrs. Fields Famous Brands, owner of both TCBY and Mrs. Fields Cookies, has a long history of licensing agreements within the grocery market.

"This is a pivotal time for the TCBY brand," said Tim Casey, the company's president and CEO. "Consumers express the need for a variety of healthy indulgences when visiting their local grocery stores, and as the frozen yogurt category leader, increasing our footprint in grocery brings TCBY into the home. Having an established licensing partner in the food service industry such as Spring Creek Holdings, reaffirms our category leadership and benefits the brand and our franchise base."

Barrington, Ill.-based Spring Creek Holdings will produce the following flavors under the TCBY label: Chocolate, Vanilla Bean, Mint Chocolate Chunk, Toffee Crunch, Cookie Dough, Cookies & Cream, Very Berry Strawberry and Mango Peach.

The eight flavors will be released this month in pints and quarts of hard pack frozen yogurt, as well as a variety of novelties including frozen yogurt sandwiches and bars at select nationwide and regional retailers. More exclusive innovations are expected to follow later this year.

Due to consumer demand for healthier food, the frozen yogurt segment has grown at an annual rate of 4.3 percent. Research recently conducted by Spring Creek Holdings uncovered that frozen yogurt shoppers are currently dissatisfied with the selection at many local retailers, and would like more variety in healthier frozen yogurt options.

"In more than 20 years in this category, developing the TCBY frozen yogurt product line for retail locations is the most exciting program I have ever been involved in," said Jerry Isaacson, president/CEO of Spring Creek Holdings, North American licensee of the TCBY brand. "TCBY holds a place as an iconic brand in our consumer consciousness and I'm thrilled we are partnering to bring delicious frozen yogurt to consumers who love the brand and introduce it to our next generation."

A website, tcbygrocery.com, has been launched with more information about the new TCBYGrocery line.

Part of a broader, ambitious strategy

The retail line is one of many strategies TCBY has embarked upon within the past two years, including an extensive rebranding effort introduced in 2010.

The brand has launched a self-serve unit model, a Super Fro-Yo line, a meal replacement concept, Greek Fro-Yo and more.

The entry into retail comes about two months after Mrs. Fields/TCBY named a new board of directors to help drive growth and profitability.

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