U-Swirl, Inc. Announces Master Licensing Agreement for Province of Ontario, Canada
CherryBerry Continues to Pursue Expansion Strategy in Canada
DURANGO, CO - (Marketwired - Apr 3, 2015) - U-Swirl, Inc. (OTCQB: SWRL) ("U-Swirl" or "the Company"), which through its U-Swirl International, Inc. subsidiary franchises and operates self-serve frozen yogurt cafés in 37 states and 4 foreign countries, today announced a further expansion of its Canadian franchising activities with the signing of a Master Licensing Agreement for its CherryBerry frozen yogurt brand in the Province of Ontario.
U-Swirl, Inc. is a controlled subsidiary of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc. (NASDAQ: RMCF).
"With the execution of a Master Licensing Agreement that anticipates the opening of CherryBerry self-serve frozen yogurt cafés in Ontario, Canada's most densely populated province, the CherryBerry brand will now be represented in three Canadian provinces -- British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Ontario," stated Greg Pope, Sr. Vice President of Franchise Development for Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc. "We believe the integration of U-Swirl International's franchise development activities with the three decades of franchise marketing and support experience of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc., played a key role in the closing of this transaction."
"The first CherryBerry store in Ontario is scheduled to open this summer in downtown Markham, Ontario, and the Master Licensing Agreement anticipates the opening of at least 30 stores over a 10-year period," added Bryan Merryman, Chief Executive Officer of U-Swirl, Inc. "On a longer-term basis, we continue to evaluate self-serve frozen yogurt opportunities, along with co-branding licensing opportunities with Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory products, in a number of additional countries. We remain optimistic that international activities will continue to play a significant role in our growth in coming years."
"The Ontario market for self-serve frozen yogurt has a tremendous amount of potential, with many untapped markets, and is still growing," noted Leo Bai, co-founder of Samson Franchise Holdings, Inc., the master licensee that has executed the contract with U-Swirl International, Inc. "Our plans are to increase brand awareness and presence through a variety of marketing channels, to expand at a sustainable pace, to partner with successful developers in order to obtain top-tier locations, and to be an advocate for the success of our sub-franchisees by providing comprehensive and ongoing support."
About U-Swirl, Inc.
U-Swirl, Inc. is an operator and franchisor of self-serve frozen yogurt cafés that operate under the following names: U-SWIRL Frozen Yogurt, CherryBerry, Yogurtini, Fuzzy Peach, Aspen Leaf Yogurt, Yogli Mogli, Gracie Bleu, and Josie's Frozen Yogurt. The cafés offer frozen yogurt in up to 20 non-fat and low-fat flavors, including tart, traditional, and no-sugar-added options, along with fresh sorbet. Approximately 70 toppings such as fresh fruit, sauces, candies, and granola are available to customize each serving of yogurt to the customer's individual taste.
In January 2013, the Company acquired frozen yogurt café assets, franchise rights and certain other assets from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc. (NASDAQ: RMCF), primarily in exchange for certain warrants/options, notes payable, and a controlling ownership interest in the Company.
U-Swirl, Inc. is headquartered in Durango, Colorado, and its common stock trades on the OTCQB under the symbol "SWRL." As of March 31, 2015, the Company and its franchisees operated 247 self-serve frozen yogurt cafés in 37 states and 4 foreign countries.
About Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc., headquartered in Durango, Colorado, is an international franchisor of gourmet retail chocolate stores and self-serve frozen yogurt cafés, and a manufacturer of an extensive line of premium chocolates and other confectionery products. As of March 31, 2015, the Company and its franchisees, licensees and controlled subsidiary (U-Swirl, Inc.) operated 597 stores and cafés in 41 states, Canada, Japan, South Korea, The United Arab Emirates, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Turkey. The Company's common stock is listed on The Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol "RMCF." Additional information is available on the Internet at www.rmcf.com.
Certain statements in this press release are "forward-looking statements." These statements involve risks and uncertainties, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking information. Risks and uncertainties that could cause cash flows to decrease or actual results to differ materially include, without limitation, seasonality, consumer interest in the Company's products, general economic conditions, consumer and retail trends, costs and availability of raw materials, competition, market conditions, and future business decisions, all of which are difficult or impossible to predict accurately and many of which are beyond the Company's control. Readers are referred to the Company's periodic reports filed with the SEC, specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. The information contained in this press release is a statement of the Company's present intentions, beliefs or expectations and is based upon, among other things, the existing business environment, industry conditions, market conditions and prices, the economy in general and the Company's assumptions. The Company may change its intentions, beliefs or expectations at any time and without notice, based upon any changes in such factors, in its assumptions or otherwise, and it undertakes no obligation to revise or update publicly any forward-looking statements for any reason. The cautionary statements contained or referred to in this press release should be considered in connection with any subsequent written or oral forward-looking statements that the Company or persons acting on its behalf may issue.
SOURCE U-Swirl, Inc.