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Issue Date: Vol. 51, No. 8, August 2011, Posted On: 8/4/2011

Dunkin' Donuts Stores Begin Selling K-Cups, Further Fueling Keurig's Growth

Emily Jed
K-Cups, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Keurig, single-cup coffee systems, Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts K-Cups, ConAgra Foods, Swiss Miss hot chocolate, office coffee service, OCS, vending, vending business

CANTON, MA -- Dunkin' Donuts began selling K-Cups on Aug. 3, getting a jump on rival Starbucks, which plans to sell its coffee in the single-cup portion packs for use with the Keurig brewing system beginning this fall.

A pack of 14 Dunkin' Donuts K-Cups will sell for about $12. Five K-Cup varieties will be available exclusively at participating Dunkin' Donuts shops.

The coffee chain is creating a buzz around the K-Cup launch with the "Dunkin' Donuts' $1K Giveaway," which runs from Aug. 4 to 12. Twelve guests chosen randomly will each win a check for $1,000, a Keurig single-cup brewer and a year's supply of Dunkin' K-Cups.

Dunkin' Donuts K-Cups debuted a week after the company began trading on the stock market in late July, with its sights set on major geographical expansion. | SEE STORY

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, maker of the Keurig system, announced its partnership with Dunkin' Donuts in February and soon after inked K-Cup pacts with Starbucks Corp. and ConAgra Foods' Swiss Miss hot chocolate brand.

The Waterbury, VT, roaster saw shares rise above $100 mark on the stock market for the first time ever in late July, more than tripling in value over the past year. And the Keurig brewing system is driving growth momentum.

K-Cup portion packs sales reportedly soared 136% to $485 million for the quarter ended June 25, versus the same 2010 period. Keurig brewer sales rose 66% to $105 million, with 1.1 million machines sold during the quarter.

Green Mountain's quarterly profit rose to $56.3 million from $18.4 million a year earlier. Sales rose 127% to $717 million. The company also issued a strong fiscal 2012 forecast, with sales expected to grow 60% to 65% and projected earnings of $2.55 to $2.65 per share.

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