Southfield’s Zoup! Ladles Out Growth Plans

The Detroit News:

After 12 years of success in Metro Detroit and the Midwest, Zoup! is heading west — and farther east — with its menu of more than 100 soups.

The Southfield-based chain of restaurants plans to add to its 25 franchises by opening 10 more locations by the end of the year and quadrupling its reach to 100 stores by 2014.

The chain, which has 13 locations in the state, is a bright spot in a beleaguered Michigan economy that has made it difficult for local companies to thrive and expand.

“When the economy’s bad, it makes an already tough industry that much tougher,” said Andy Deloney of the Michigan Restaurant Association. “So for a Michigan-based company like Zoup! to be moving forward with plans certainly is great news.”

During the recession, “financing really tightened up,” Zoup! founder Eric Ersher said, “and it became much more challenging to get these franchise owners financed.” Still, Zoup! managed to open 10 locations in 2009. More.

Photo: Robin Buckson / The Detroit News.

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