The Franchise King®

Panera’s Franchisee Wins A Penguin Award


Sam Covelli owns and operates Covelli Enterprises, Inc., a huge franchise organization.

(This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy).

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At the end of 2008, the company owned 155 Panera Bread franchises and has opened more than 50 O'Charley's Restaurant franchises.

Sam Covelli was the largest franchisee of McDonald's Restaurants, owning 43 units at the end of 1997. He earned the most awards ever in the McDonald's organization, including the prestigious Golden Arch Award. The award is given every two years to an owner that exemplifies and consistently maintains the highest-rated restaurant operations and business practices.



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In 1997, Covelli sold all of his McDonald's restaurants to concentrate on Panera Bread. The first Panera Bread franchise opened in Boardman in 1998. By the end of 2008 the chain had spread to West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Florida with gross sales revenues exceeding $300 million.

Read about the YSU Penguin Award, and why he's receiving it, here.

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