Canton-based Massachusetts own Dunkin’ Brands says that it will be giving one new location of its chain the sole name “Dunkin’” and eliminate the “Donuts” part from the title. According to the company, some other locations could receive the new name as well. The initial Test location is Pasadena, California.

A Place to Buy Coffee

The name alteration is meant to cause people to think about “Dunkin’” as a place to buy coffee, although donuts will still be featured at the store. The company revealed that it does not plan to make a solid decision about the name modification until late in 2018.

That is when the company reportedly will begin revamping the looks of its stores. Nation’s Restaurant News first reported the test for the name change.

A Move to Support Current Branding

The restaurant chain has claimed for the last ten years that "America Runs on Dunkin’." Now, the number one donut chain is seeing if changing the name will support its advertising message. Therefore, the company does not consider the move as one that does not complement current branding.

An On-the-Go Beverage-endorsed Brand

The planned name test solidifies remarks made by Dunkin’ Brands’ CEO, Nigel Travis. During a Q2 earnings call, Mr. Travis spoke about the company’s efforts to design a new layout of the stores as well as efforts toward streamlining menu options.

The idea is to enhance the company’s influence as an on-the-go and beverage-endorsed type of brand. Currently, the donut chain features 12,300 locations internationally. Therefore, the name change is one that can have a large impact on the company’s bottom line.

Raising the Bar

This move evidently will keep Dunkin’ Brands and Starbucks competitive as the two chains are the two largest in the U.S.

that features coffee. Although both companies highlight many of the same features in their menus and methods of operation, key differences remain in their business models. Therefore, a name change focuses on Dunkin’ branding, one of the elements that make the two large coffee retailers different.

While Dunkin’ Brands has primarily featured itself as a coffee retailer that offers donuts and other foods, Starbucks portrays itself as a beverage provider that supplies more of a coffee house type of experience.

Therefore, the name change for Dunkin’ will narrow the variance in this respect. Currently, Starbucks is thought to be a more upscale brand as the coffee retailer offers a broader menu and personalized experience. This personalization is supported by writing a customer’s name on his or her cup. Socialization is also encouraged as customers can enjoy free wireless access.