As part of an initiative to partner with retired professional athletes, Auntie Anne's has announced retired NBA star Mark Blount as its newest franchise owner.

Blount will bring two new locations to Palm Beach, Fla., which are expected to open in October 2013 and February 2014.

This initiative began three years ago. Auntie Anne's already has two retired athletes in its franchise system, including Shaquille O'Neal and Ed Muransky.

"Mark is an ideal addition to the Auntie Anne's franchise community," said Bill Dunn, president and COO of Auntie Anne's. "He is passionate about the brand, and he shares our desire to introduce Auntie Anne's to new guests, while continuing to 'wow' our loyal existing consumers. Mark is well-equipped to take on this new challenge, and I wholeheartedly believe he will work hard to excel in this business, just as he did on the NBA court."

Read more about franchising initiatives.

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