resilient image black bg


Daryl Brewster: Resilient podcast

Saving an iconic brand

In 2003, it was “America’s hottest brand.” But when Daryl Brewster took over as Krispy Kreme’s CEO just three years later, he faced a drastically different reality. Hear how Daryl and his team reduced debt, expanded globally, and restored the company’s tarnished brand.

Daryl Brewster, former Krispy Kreme CEO, on saving an iconic brand

Daryl Brewster spoke with Deloitte Risk and Financial Advisory’s Mike Kearney about joining Krispy Kreme as CEO in 2006, just when the company was in the midst of a perfect storm: Billions in lawsuits. Hundreds of millions in debt. Staggering turnover. Furious franchisees.

We were at the edge and the sharks were circling the tank.

In its efforts to rebuild, Krispy Kreme established three “S” goals—survival, stability, and sustained growth—and set out a K-R-I-S-P-Y strategy to achieve those goals.

  • K–“Klean” up the mess and generate “kash.”
  • R–Run great doughnut shops, while getting out from under the crisis.
  • I–International expansion.
  • S–Save money everywhere.
  • P–Power the organization and get everyone pulling in the same direction.
  • Y–“You.” As in what can you, the employee, do to drive these key strategies?

Other critical pieces to Krispy Kreme’s turnaround? Finding the right team. Maintaining strong ties with the community. Having a balance of realism and optimism. And acknowledging the current state of the company while painting a brighter future.

Back to top

Related article

Daryl Brewster, in a Wall Street Journal article speaks about his role as the CEO of Krispy Kreme.

Back to top


Stay ahead of the curve

Subscribe to receive the latest Resilient podcasts and related information about the series.

Resilient is an award-winning podcast series that features authentic, engaging, and thought-provoking conversations with leaders. Hear interviews and personal stories about how CEOs, senior executives, government officials, board members, and people outside of the business world embrace complexity to lead, navigate, and disrupt to accelerate performance. And discover what they learned about resilience amid risk, crisis, and disruption.

For more in the series, visit the Resilient Podcast library page.

Back to top

Did you find this useful?