PORTLAND, Ore. -- In an effort to offer customers more convenience, Fred Meyer Inc. here is continuing to add Cinnabon World Famous Cinnamon Rolls bakeries and espresso shops in its stores. Most recently, the chain's fifth Cinnabon operation was launched in a store in Lacey, Wash., March 23.
"We think having Cinnabon operations inside our stores adds to the one-stop-shopping experience, and that's what we want to provide our customers with," said Rob Boley, assistant vice president of public relations for the 159-unit Fred Meyer.
Asked if Cinnabon sales have any effect on the stores' in-store bakery sales, Boley said, "We carry some similar products, but at different price points, and we think Cinnabon complements them. The Cinnabon bakery offers our customers another option. We're happy with the relationship."
Cinnabon cinnamon rolls, made from a secret recipe, feature melted brown sugar inside and a freshly made cream-cheese frosting slathered on top.
Huge Cinnabon "Classics," weighing in at 207 grams each, retail for $1.89 to $2.09 each. Mini Cinnabon rolls, which are about a third of the size of the Classics, retail for $1.29 to $1.49 each. Four-packs and six-packs of Classics and nine-packs of the minirolls are popular, according to Cinnabon officials.
Cinnabon leases space in Fred Meyer units and has negotiated -- as it does with other supermarkets -- to get a spot near the entrance, a Cinnabon spokeswoman said.
At the Lacey location, the Cinnabon operation is located to the right, just inside the main entrance. Fred Meyer's in-store bakery is situated further toward the back on the left of the fresh food aisle. Seating at the Cinnabon counter is offered at four sets of ice-cream-parlor-type tables and chairs.
"We see ourselves as performing the role of greeting the store's customers. The aroma of Cinnabon cinnamon rolls baking attracts people. And there's action at the counter as our employees pack up boxes of Cinnabon rolls and make espresso drinks," she added.
Cinnabon's lattes, cappuccinos and a signature mochalatta chill -- a chilled espresso-chocolate drink -- make up a hefty part of sales at the counter, the Cinnabon spokeswoman said. She declined, however, to offer percentages or to compare sales at this Fred Meyer unit against those at Cinnabon operations in other supermarkets.
Cinnabon, which has become known to consumers in shopping malls, has more recently targeted heavy-volume supermarkets as sites.
The company, which chalked up $100 million in sales in 1994, currently operates 300 bakeries. Forty of them are inside supermarkets in the Northwest, California, in the South and on the East Coast.