She called herself a country girl. Growing up Amish is about as country as it gets.
Anne Beiler said she never lived in a city, but in August 2011 she spent five days in one of the poorest sections of Baltimore.
“Five days is not long, but it is long enough to get a feel for city life,” said Beiler, who will be featured on Sunday at 8 p.m. on ABC’s “Secret Millionaire.”
In a unique twist, Beiler, founder of Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, lived on Washington Street in East Baltimore —one of the most unsafe areas in the city — and worked with people and organizations in need of her help.
Wildly popular Lancaster-based Auntie Anne’s Pretzels has been sold to huge food conglomerate FOCUS Brands of Atlanta, GA. Auntie Anne’s, while no longer being locally owned, will stay based in Lancaster. The sale was completed Monday for an undisclosed price. Auntie Anne’s is the world’s largest hand-rolled soft pretzel chain with 1,100 stores internationally. Auntie Anne’s is expected to produce $375 million in sales this year. That’s a LOT of pretzels!
There are 274 employees based in Lancaster at the headquarters and at the production/warehouse facility. Hopefully they won’t end up like Mrs. Smith’s!
FOCUS Brands owns Carvel, Cinnabon, Seattle’s Best Coffee (some international rights), Schlotzsky’s and Moe’s Southwest Grill in addition to Auntie Anne’s. FOCUS Brands is owned by even larger Roark Capital, also based in Atlanta.