Duff Goldman quit his day job to launch a custom cake business out of his one-bedroom apartment in Baltimore, Maryland. The wild creations he and his team designed at Charm City Cakes ended up on the hit Food Network show, Ace of Cakes, which inspired an entire generation to create their own cakes. Duff’s CakeMix was created to inspire guests to feel empowered by utilizing Duff’s products and ingredients to design their own cake creations.
In this exclusive Q&A, we chat with Pamela Fazio, CEO of Duff’s CakeMix, about this new franchise opportunity.
Franchise Chatter (FC): Welcome, Pamela. Thank you for your time today. Can you start by telling us more about Duff’s CakeMix’s one-of-a-kind concept?
Pamela Fazio (PF): Duff Goldman started America’s passion for cake decorating with his pioneering “Ace of Cakes” show on the Food Network. Duff’s CakeMix gives everybody the chance to be a star cake decorator for a day by providing everything needed to make a fanciful cake. The best part of Duff’s CakeMix is that it creates a high-energy space for guests to unleash their creativity while having a fun-filled, interactive experience with friends and family.
Duff’s CakeMix is unique because it is the only do-it-yourself cake decorating studio in the franchise arena. Customers can pick their favorite flavor of cakes and cupcakes and select from a pool of colorful frostings, fondants and candies before building their edible masterpiece.
Our brand’s simplified, streamlined systems do not require back-of-house operations or managers and staff to have previous restaurant or bakery experience. As a result, our team operates using a service-first mindset.
FC: Tell me about your background and how you got involved with Duff’s CakeMix.
PF: I recently served as the President and CEO of Beard Papa’s. Before joining the Beard Papa’s team, I owned my own company, Fazio Restaurant Group, based out of Scottsdale, Arizona. I have occupied various senior leadership roles with brands such as J&A Food Service Inc. and Kahala Brands.
My industry experience has allowed me to develop the skillset needed to create strategic systems and empower brands for rapid expansion. After meeting with the Duff’s CakeMix team, I saw the brand’s potential and wanted to play a part in providing people nationwide with a fun environment that marries their love of all things sweet with their creative passions.
FC: What impact has Duff’s CakeMix had on the California community?
PF: The excitement surrounding Duff’s CakeMix has spread like wildfire throughout California. Californians have embraced our cake decorating experience built for all ages and skill levels and have been very complimentary with our exceptional staff, family-friendly atmosphere and offerings. Whether customers visit us for an evening out with family, a date night, a birthday party or a team-building event, our step-by-step cake decorating guides and tools give the community an outlet to apply their cake decorating skills to their own design!
FC: What are the brand’s plans for franchise expansion?
PF: Duff’s CakeMix is hitting the ground running with its franchise expansion efforts and plans to open 250 units in the United States and 1,000 worldwide.
FC: What makes Duff’s a great investment for a franchisee?
PF: Duff’s CakeMix is a low-cost investment featuring a solid foundation and streamlined systems that can simplify day-to-day operations. We have seen how well the concept has resonated throughout California, and we are confident that we will be able to build on this success in other markets. Therefore, Duff’s CakeMix is the perfect opportunity for both new and experienced franchisees to invest their time and resources in a brand that is slated for rapid growth in a high-demand space.
FC: What advice would you give to someone considering an emerging brand as a franchise concept?
PF: My advice would be to study the core foundation of the emerging brand and its systems to determine its productivity and understand its operating procedures. A franchisee must familiarize themselves with the market space the concept occupies to build top-of-mind brand awareness that will help drive revenue.
Duff’s CakeMix is the ideal emerging concept for franchisees to get behind because it is the first concept to merge hands-on creativity and desserts. Not only has Duff strategically built this concept to fill a gap in the market, but the team has implemented modern, technology-forward processes that will drive seamless operations and develop a successful venture.
FC: Why did you choose to partner with Fransmart?
PF: I chose Fransmart because of its industry-leading presence in the franchise development space. The entire team has an eye for potential and the skillset to execute worldwide growth. Fransmart has sold over 5,000 franchises and has grown brands such as Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Qdoba and The Halal Guys into the powerhouse chains they are today.
I am confident that Fransmart’s knowledge of current consumer taste and industry trends combined with its track record for success will serve our brand well and help it reach countless communities across the globe.