'I fell in love with the concept - the food, the decor, the whole package.'
ROUND THE CORNER: A Corner Bakery Cafe location in California. Six shops are slated to open in Rhode Island.
COURTESY CORNER BAKERY
By Michael Souza PBN Staff Writer
When restaurateur and Rhode Island-raised Glenn Beattie returns to the state next year, he will be bringing the Corner Bakery Cafe with him.
An agreement between Beattie’s company, Top Line Restaurants, and Corner Bakery calls for 16 breakfast and lunch cafés in Connecticut and six in Rhode Island, with the first location scheduled to open locally within a year.
According to Texas-based Corner Bakery, the new restaurants will boost the regional economy by adding more than 800 jobs in the two states over the next eight years. Each restaurant is planned to be about 4,000 square feet, with indoor seating for 125 and outdoor patio space for another 25 customers. Each store averages 30 to 50 employees.
Top Line Restaurants has exclusive rights to open Corner Bakery outlets in both states. Rhode Island locations have yet to be determined.
Of approximately 130 Corner Bakery locations nationally, a handful are situated in New York and New Jersey. The chain is concentrated mostly in the southern and western United States, in places such as Texas, Colorado, Illinois and Florida.
A graduate of Toll Gate High School in Warwick, Beattie also studied at Providence College for three years before dropping out of school after receiving an invitation to become a Denny’s franchisee. In 1990, Beattie started with three Denny’s Restaurant locations in Arizona.
In 2007, he purchased four Denny’s in Florida but soon sold those. In 2009 he, along with business partner and wife, Tina, purchased 28 more Denny’s in New York.
Now he plans to march into Rhode Island with a new commercial venture.
“Everything I’ve done up until now has been Denny’s. Denny’s has been very good to me; it’s been strong in the family dining segment,” said Beattie. Looking for an opportunity in another segment of the restaurant industry a few years ago, he discovered the “fast casual” segment, where the only national player appeared to be Panera Bread. “There are more than 1,500 in the country and they are doing phenomenal. After a lot of research I discovered Corner Bakery,” he said.