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Ahead of the Curve

The twisters of Wetzel's Pretzels are touching down everywhere

By Alex Purugganan • Dec 1, 2000

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Anybody could have seen this one coming. When your name isWetzel, the title of "pretzel-making tycoon" ispractically set in stone. Thus goes the saga of Rick Wetzel,president and co-founder of Wetzel's Pretzels LLC. In a littlemore than six years, Wetzel and CEO Bill Phelps have built theirfresh-baked pretzel franchise to 127 units nationwide, a far cryfrom their humble beginnings manning the counters of their firststore.

Wetzel has led his franchise into groundbreaking territory,introducing his assortment of hand-rolled pretzels and a 30-minutefreshness guarantee to such nontraditional venues as universities,stadiums and airports nationwide, as well as in Australia, Canada,Puerto Rico and Taiwan.

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