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Update: Growler USA Buys Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli


After reporting on Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli’s brand refresh and big plans for growth for our April issue, today news broke that Centennial, Colorado-based Growler USA has purchased the fast-casual deli concept. As part of the transaction, brands will maintain their individual names and concepts.

Smiling Moose attracts a very similar customer base as Growler USA, in that guests are looking for a unique, higher quality experience,” said Growler CEO Dan White. “The brand has a strong infrastructure that offers great synergy with our franchise operations team, and I expect it will have a parallel growth path with Growler USA.”

Growler USA is a microbrew pub that offers American-made craft beers and a menu designed to complement the flavors of the drinks. Each pub has up to 100 taps of craft beer, hard cider, draught wine, root beer, cold-pressed coffee and kombucha tea. Since franchising in 2014, Growler USA has more than 30 locations in development across 10 states, including Colorado, Texas, Washington, California, Florida, Arizona and Virginia.

Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli currently has 18 units across seven states, with plans to reach 100 locations by 2020. Inspired by the Rocky Mountains, Smiling Moose offers a variety of house-made options including chopped salads, hot and cold sandwiches, soups, wraps and breakfast items.

The Smiling Moose corporate team has relocated to the Growler USA national headquarters in Centennial, Colorado. Sue Daggett, former president of Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain Deli, will serve as executive vice president.

During my interview, I was impressed with Daggett’s hands-on approach to the brand, as well as her plans for growing the concept beyond its rugged home in the Rockies. I look forward to seeing how this new marriage works out, and I’ll be following the progress of both brands going forward.

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About This Blog

The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Laura MichaelsLaura Michaels is editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is senior editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is restaurants editor at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at




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