William Rosenberg

William Rosenberg (June 10, 1916 – September 22, 2002) was an Jewish entrepreneur.

He founded the Dunkin‘ Donuts franchise in 1950 in Quincy, Massachusetts. In 1946, Rosenberg founded Industrial Luncheon Services, a company that delivered meals and coffee break snacks

Dunkin Donuts logo

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to factory workers on the outskirts of Boston, Massachusetts. The success of Industrial Luncheon Services led Rosenberg to open his first coffee and doughnut shop, the „Open Kettle“ and later, Dunkin‘ Donuts. Today there are over five thousand Dunkin‘ Donuts franchises.

In 1960, he founded the International Franchise Association.

Rosenberg was born in Boston, Massachusetts and educated in public schools. Due to financial trouble, he was forced to leave school by eighth grade and work for Western Union to help support his family during the Great Depression.

At seventeen, he worked for a company that distributed ice cream from refrigerated trucks. He was promoted to Assistant Manager by twenty, then Manager. He was the Branch Manager at twenty-one and was eventually promoted to National Sales Manager.

At the start of World War II, he joined the Bethlehem Steel Company in Hingham, Massachusetts. He would later become the UnionDelegate and later the Contract Coordinator.

After the war, Rosenberg borrowed $1000 to add to his $1500 in war bonds and used his knowledge of food distribution to open his first company. He started a mobile industrial catering business. Within a short time, he had 140 catering trucks, 25 in-plant outlets and a vending operation. He noticed that forty percent of his revenues came from coffee and doughnuts. He started a retail shop that specialized in those products and began Dunkin‘ Donuts.

Upon opening his sixth shop, he decided on the concept of franchising his business as a means of distribution and expansion.

In 2001, he published his autobiography, Time to Make the Donuts: The Founder of Dunkin Donuts Shares an American Journey.

On September 22, 2002, Rosenberg died at the age of 86 at his home in Mashpee, Massachusetts, on Cape Cod of bladder cancer.


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