Crumbs Cleanup: CNBC Star Talks Plan to Save Shuttered Cupcake Chain

11:43 AM PST 07/14/2014 by Michael O'Connell
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Swooping in after the sudden closure of the bakery's 48 locations, "Profit" investor Marcus Lemonis plans to use the brand to sell other edible businesses he's invested in on the show.

The uncertain fate of cupcake chain Crumbs lingered in the news for the week leading up to Marcus Lemonis' appearance at the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Monday. The investor, who's parlayed his career of turning businesses around with sizable cash infusions into the reality show The Profit on CNBC, swooped in with Fischer Enterprises to buy the shuttered bakeries on Friday.

It turns out the move is, at least in part, being used to assist several of the businesses he's already worked with on the show.

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"The Crumbs opportunity was kind of happenstance," Lemonis told reporters, plugging the October return of his series. "I'd been a lender to them for quite a bit, but what I saw was the opportunity to take four of the brands from our show and integrate them. It's probably the first time reality meets reality."

Those brands — Sweet Pete's Candy, Matt's Cookies, Key West Key Lime Pie Company and Mr. Green Tea ice cream — will all find their way into the Crumbs locations that survive an audit Lemonis plans to conduct.

"Crumbs to me was 48 small businesses that should have been run like a holding company, not a Fortune 500 company," he said, predicting that roughly 27 to 30 of the locations will reopen based on how profitably they were performing at the time of last week's sudden closure.

None of that will be televised, however. The timing of the deal prevented the Crumbs rescue from being taped for the series.

"The only possibility would be one of the companies from the season coming in the fall that could get an opportunity to sell at Crumbs," he said. "Anything else would be a reenactment. Everything happened off camera."

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