Pittsburgh-based Bruster’s Real Ice Cream has closed a franchise deal with a former marketing executive for five new locations in the Valley.
The ice cream retailer made its first foray into the Valley when a shop opened in Gilbert earlier this year.
“I’m excited to partner with Bruster’s and be in the Valley here,” said Dan Tarkoff, the newly minted franchise owner.
He said he hopes to have the locations up and running by the end of the year.
“I’ve always had this idea of, gee, this would be really cool to do,” Tarkoff said. “I lived in Pittsburgh for 17 years. I’m very familiar with Bruster’s — in fact, my daughter worked there in high school.”
Tarkoff said he isn’t worried about an overabundance of frozen dessert shops in the ever-arid Valley. Greater Phoenix is home to several frozen treat concepts from Scottsdale-based Cold Stone Creamery to Valley favorites Sweet Republic and Churn, as well as a number of frozen yogurt shops.
“I think Bruster’s is unique and different enough,” he said. “They own a portion of the dairy. The ice cream is made in-store in every store. The product is fresh.”
Bruster’s announced in April that it signed franchise agreements for seven new markets.
“They’re focused on driving success for their franchisees,” Tarkoff said. “The more a franchisee sells, the more the franchisor makes in their royalties.”
His favorite flavor, he said, is turtle.