Mechanicsburg’s Duck Donuts expanding to Middle East

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MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – There is excitement in the Duck Donuts’ kitchen, but something else is baking.

The Mechanicsburg-based business has more than 80 stores in America, but soon, the company will be in two new countries.

The donut shop announced Wednesday that it is expanding to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to Riyadh and Dubai, respectively.

This expansion to another continent is all thanks to a loyal customer who regularly visited a store near Washington, D.C.

“We are headed to the Middle East,” said Betsy Hamm, the company’s chief operating officer. “There is nothing like Duck Donuts right now in the Middle East, so someone saw the opportunity to take a concept from the United States over to the Middle East.”

Hamm believes it’s all thanks to their warm, made-to-order style.

“What’s special about these donuts, when you come in, there are no donuts in a case. All the donuts are made to order,” Hamm said.

Mohammed Albaqami is the man taking the company globally.

“He had frequented the store with his family, always had a great experience, and was looking to move back to the Middle East,” Hamm said.

Ten stores over five years will open in Saudi Arabia, starting in Riyadh, the capital. The UAE’s first location will be in Dubai.

“Both of their cultures really enjoy sweets and coffee,” Hamm said. “They think our menu is very strong and plan to at least roll out originally all of the flavors and offerings that we have except for substituting a turkey bacon.”

These stores are set to begin opening in the Middle East early next year.

Duck Donuts already has an international location in Santiago, Chile, which opened in January.

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