August 03, 2011 // Franchising.com // Jacksonville, Fla. - Renowned for hearty, oversized portions and piping hot subs, Firehouse Subs® is becoming a beverage innovator with the launch of Coca-Cola Freestyle® fountains in all of its 437 restaurants. With Coca-Cola Freestyle, visitors to Firehouse Subs locations across the country will now have the ability to create their own personal and customized drinks at their fingertips.
In 2009, Firehouse Subs and Coca-Cola partnered on a Coca-Cola Freestyle test in Atlanta, with the goal of amplifying the customer experience and increasing drink revenue. Firehouse Subs was an important partner during the test and has since experienced double-digit sales and traffic increases. The chain has also seen significant increases in drink incidence, solidifying the decision to have Coca-Cola Freestyle in all existing and future locations.
"The first time we saw Coca-Cola Freestyle, we knew it would revolutionize the beverage industry and we welcomed a test with our partners at Coca-Cola," said Robin Sorensen, co-founder of Firehouse Subs. "Customers rave about Coca-Cola Freestyle. It offers an interactive experience that when combined with our subs, is unmatched, and has led to a substantial increase in beverage sales. We're pumped to be the first national chain on the planet to bring the fountain of the future to all of our loyal customers."
Firehouse Subs sells more soft drinks than the average fast casual chain in the sub/sandwich category. The new technology is a perfect complement, providing 120+ sparkling and still beverage brands at Firehouse Subs restaurants, from a single freestanding unit. Sleek and stylish, the unit is touch-screen operated and offers regular and low-calorie beverage brands, flavored waters, sports drinks, lemonades and other options, many exclusive to Coca-Cola Freestyle. Guests choose from endless possibilities, many never before marketed in the U.S., including brands such as caffeine-free Diet Coke® with Lime, Fanta® Peach, Grape Vault TM, Minute Maid® Light Orange Lemonade and more.
"Our partners at Firehouse Subs recognize that Coca-Cola Freestyle enhances the overall dining experience for their customers. With this expansion of Coca-Cola Freestyle availability, people will be able to choose the perfect beverage to complement their meal at any Firehouse Subs," said Gene Farrell, vice president, Coca-Cola Freestyle, Coca-Cola Refreshments. "Coca-Cola Freestyle offers people something they've never experienced before and helps our partners like Firehouse Subs grow both their beverage business and their total business."
Firehouse Subs' top-selling Cherry Lime-Aid®, an exclusive original recipe served with fresh squeezed lime, is one of the offerings on the fountains, making the chain the first to have its own signature drink brand on Coca-Cola Freestyle.
Firehouse Subs, founded in Jacksonville, Fla. by former firefighting brothers Chris Sorensen and Robin Sorensen, is a 437-unit fast casual restaurant chain. Firehouse Subs offers oversized portions of premium hand-sliced meats and cheeses, steamed to make the flavors burst, then piled high with fresh produce atop a toasted sub roll. The restaurants reflect the authentic firefighter heritage of the founding family's 200 years of firefighting service.
In 2005, Firehouse Subs created the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation with the mission of providing funding, life-saving equipment and educational opportunities to first-responders. Through the non-profit 501(c)(3), Firehouse Subs has given $2.6 million to hometown heroes, impacting more than 225 communities.
For more information about Firehouse Subs, please visit firehousesubs.com, facebook.com/firehousesubs or follow on Twitter at @firehousesubs.
The sleek, stylish new fountains are touch screen operated, enabling consumers to select from more than 100 regular and low-calorie beverage brands. Many varieties of waters, fruit-flavored and sparkling beverages are now available to U.S consumers exclusively on Coca-Cola Freestyle. Coca-Cola Freestyle uses unique, proprietary PurePour Technology TM and has the capacity to dispense more than 100 branded beverages in the same footprint as a standard eight-valve machine. Permanent fountain locations can be found in select outlets in Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Orlando, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, Washington DC and Northern and Southern California. Consumers experience Coca-Cola Freestyle virtually at www.facebook.com/cocacolafreestyle.
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, the Company's portfolio features 15 billion dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply and Georgia. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, juices and juice drinks and ready-to-drink teas and coffees. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company's beverages at a rate of 1.7 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. For more information about our Company, please visit our website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.