Extensive SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’ – An American Multinational Coffee & Doughnut Company

Updated on: Jan 9, 2022
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My name is Aditya Shastri and I have written this case study with the help of my students from IIDE's online digital marketing courses in India.

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We have previously written an article on the SWOT analysis of Chipotle; this time we are back with another article on SWOT analysis of Dunkin’.

Dunkin’ Donuts was based on the belief that victory arrives at those who concentrate on accomplishing what they do correctly. With an easy coffee and baking formula, the fast-food chain evolved not only as a family name but also the speediest expanding in the U.S and all over the world with 13,000 stores across the globe.

Even though Dunkin’ is a 1950’s brand, its marketing tactics have been updated with the latest trends. Dunkin’ markets its product offline as well as online. But, Dunkin’’s central focus has been digital marketing since the beginning of digital marketing popularity. 

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This blog has been written to gain a thorough understanding of Dunkin’ company, its products, its popularity, net revenue, and to give an authentic picture of the SWOT analysis of Dunkin’.

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About Dunkin’

SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’ - Dunkin’ Donuts Take Away & Dining

Dunkin’ was founded in the year 1950 in Quincy, Massachusetts, the U.S. by William Rosenberg and it is one of the leading franchise providers of quick-service restaurants in the world. With approximately 13,500 stores across 42 countries, Dunkin’ has been winning the souls of customers with its appetising range of doughnuts, freshly brewed coffee and espresso, baked goods and more. 

World’s favourite Dunkin’ is an everyday stop for coffee and baked goods. Dunkin’ is a market leader in the hot coffee, iced coffee, doughnut, bagel and muffin categories. Earlier, in 1990 the chain was acquired by Baskin-Robbins but now Dunkin’ is part of the Inspire Brands family of restaurants. Dunkin’ has more than 12,600 restaurants in 40 countries worldwide.

Quick Stats on Dunkin’
Founder William Rosenberg
Year Founded 1950
Origin Quincy, Massachusetts, the U.S.
No. of Employees 270,000+
Company Type Public
Market Cap $8.7 Billion (2021)
Annual Revenue $1.37 Billion (2019)
Net Income/ Profit $242.02 Million (2019)


SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’ - Dunkin’ Range of Products

Products by Dunkin’

  • Doughnuts
  • Burgers
  • Bagels
  • Croissants
  • Hash browns
  • Wraps
  • Sandwiches
  • Cold and hot beverages

Competitors of Dunkin’

  • McDonald’s
  • Starbucks
  • Krispy Kreme
  • Black Bear Diner
  • Peet’s Coffee

Now that we understand the company’s key business, let’s look after the SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’.

SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’

SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’ can show how a well-established company uses its opportunities to ensure its growth. It can show how the company takes advantage of its strengths to use the opportunities while working on its weaknesses. SWOT Analysis of Dunkin’ will also reveal its expansion plans.

To better understand the SWOT analysis of Dunkin’, refer to the infographic below:

SWOT Analysis of Dunkin' - SWOT Infographics of Dunkin'

Now first let’s begin with the strengths of the company from the SWOT analysis of Dunkin’.

Strengths of Dunkin’

  • A Powerful Niche: Quick meals are a competitive segment in retail. But even in quick meals, Dunkin’ focused on a special niche which is why it could scour its potential. Everything related to desserts and bakeries like Donuts, Pastries, Bagels, Muffins, Cakes etc. and many more are all the niche of Dunkin’.
  • Rising Coffee Sales: Besides bakery products, Dunkin’ coffee is a remarkable hit in the market too. In fact, after 2003, Dunkin’ donuts began focusing more on Coffee sales along with donuts.
  • Brand Following: The trademark is well-known for two things, one is Coffee & Donuts under Dunkin’ Donuts and the other is the ice-creams under Baskin Robbins. Both the labels have a massive fan following and consumers love the products that come out of both of these companies. 
  • Reasonable Prices: To ensure customer satisfaction, Dunkin’ provides high-quality food while ensuring that the prices charged are reasonable for their customers.
  • Range of Sub Brands: Dunkin’ not only enjoys profits from the sales of doughnuts at Dunkin’ Donuts but its profit also comes from its other 3 sub-brands named Baskin Robbins, Mr Donut and Togo’s franchise which hold a total revenue of $6.2 Billion.
  • Franchise Model: In the food industry Dunkin’ is a big name because of its easy franchise model. The things required to take a franchise of Dunkin’ Donuts are – a functional market, previous experience of operating a food business, excellent passion for business and the proper resources. The comfortable model of franchising makes it easy for Dunkin’ to expand its business.

Weaknesses of Dunkin

  • Poor Franchise Relations: Although the company is known for its excellent supply chain model and processes management, yet it is lacking in developing franchise relations, a concern that should be resolved to expand faster than the competition.
  • Slow Expansion in Developing Economies: Dunkin’ Donuts is not growing as quickly as it should be. Till now, it should have been present in a lot of emerging and growing economies which is not the case. Even in a developing economy at a rapid pace like India, the presence of Dunkin’ Donuts is not up to the mark.
  • Lack of Variety: Dunkin’ menu is limited to primarily doughnuts, burgers and beverages, resulting in a lack of variety. As a result, their customers spend relatively large amounts of money at their competitors’ locations, such as Costa Coffee or Krispy Kreme.
  • Criticism & Allegations: Dunkin’ has been put in several criticisms by its competitors and customers between 2006-13 which certainly spoiled the brand image very badly. Lawsuits by McDonald’s & Subway and customer dissatisfaction for specific advertisements are some of them.

Opportunities for Dunkin’

  • Healthy Food: Nowadays people have become very health conscious and thus Dunkin’ can start adding healthy and safe food into their menus.
  • Expansion: Compared to Starbucks which is in 65 countries this company has only been in 42 countries. It can expand and increase its sales volume.
  • Research and Development: Dunkin’ can invest more in research and development and know more about its target customers and competitors.
  • New Products in Menu: Desserts and sweet markets are some of the potential markets in the food segment. Adding new and yummy snacks to its menu will increase customer feet in stores. Further expansion and something unique is always desired by the customers.
  • Training and Retaining Top-Performing Employees: Dunkin’ can gain a competitive advantage over its competitors by retaining its employees. It can be ensured by investing in new employee training, offering a competitive salary, and so on.

Threats to Dunkin’

  • Issue in Franchising: Recently, Dunkin’ is facing some issues on the franchising and distribution side. As compared to other fast-food chains, the growth of the Dunkin’ franchise is relatively slow which is rising trouble for Dunkin’ in present and future.
  • Competitors: KFC, Starbucks, McDonald’s, and burger king are the main competitors which are growing rapidly. Thus it should also increase its pace.
  • Shift Toward Healthy lifestyle: With rapid changes in lifestyle people or customers have adopted healthier lifestyles.
  • Seasonal Demand: Some products are demanded based on seasons like cold beverages only in summer.
  • Shelf Life: Being bakery products, the shelf life of products like doughnuts is quite less as compared to its competitors that prepare food on an order basis. Day decreasing sales can increase wastage, and limited production can lead to order fulfilment failures and running out of stock, ultimately causing customer dissatisfaction. 

This ends our extensive SWOT analysis of Dunkin’. Let us conclude our learning below.

Digital Marketing Academic Challenge 2024 - DMAC

To Conclude

Dunkin’ is growing exponentially worldwide due to the benefits of digital marketing, but somehow it is lagging to provide a variety of desserts to fulfil customer needs. Also, Dunkin’ is facing food safety challenges that can be cured by taking hygiene factors into account.      

If not, then Dunkin’ has to again face some strict legal actions in the future. If Dunkin’ starts converting these weaknesses and threats into opportunities then soon is the day when Dunkin’ will gain the highest market share than its competitors.

Talking about the competition where marketing plays a crucial role, taking advantage of technology not merely in this industry in which every other company is focusing on digital marketing to rise ahead of each other. If you have the curiosity to learn you may check out IIDE’s 3 Month Advanced Online Digital Marketing Course to know more.

We hope this blog on the SWOT analysis of Dunkin’ has given you a good insight into the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]


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