Market Overview

Soupman Continues To Gain Ground In Food Truck Segment


Soupman, Inc. (OTCQB: SOUP), maker of iconic soup brand The Original Soupman, continues to gain ground in America’s food truck segment as it targets more consumers in major cities in the U.S. with its increasingly popular Soup Mobile. With franchise restaurant chains finding the food truck trend more attractive each day, Soupman, Inc. could not have picked a better timing for its latest endeavor.

Soupman’s mobile trucks have cropped up in New Jersey as entrepreneurs started to take notice of the iconic brand’s Soup Mobile franchise model. The trucks have made neighborhood stops in Atlantic City and have catered to attendees of local state fairs and theme parks in April and May. The truck also made its way to Baltimore and other cities, albeit on a non-profit purpose, for hunger-relief missions and as part of Soupman founder Al Yeganeh’s traveling campaign to feed the hungry.

While these areas are still not saturated by food trucks, new businesses entering the market at a dizzying pace will liven up mobile food vending activities in the said locations in the near future—a trend Soupman could largely benefit from moving forward. After all, location does not matter much to consumers, as long as they’re getting their fill of crave-worthy food. According to a survey by research and consulting firm Technomic, some 26 percent of Americans claimed they have visited a food truck during the past six months in 2010, even if most of the trucks were located in “few big cities.”

Soupman, Inc., which rivals big-cap soup names Campbell’s and Progresso, owes its good timing to the renewed popularity its soup line. Thanks to a sponsorship/catering stint at this year’s Super Bowl, and the release of its new shelf-stable Tetra Recart-packaged soups, the company has enjoyed a lot of free publicity and market exposure recently.

The New York Post reported that Soupman plans to roll out a fleet of 80 to 100 soup mobiles in the US this year. Franchising the truck costs a total of $100,000-- $15,000 of which is for the rights to the franchise model, while $85,000 is for leasing the truck itself.

As more franchisees avail of the Soupman’s Soup Mobile opportunity, the company will be able to increase its market share in the fast-growing segment. From an annual growth rate of 8.4 percent, the segment is predicted to grow by 12.4 percent from 2009 up to 2014, IBISWorld, a Los Angeles-based market intelligence provider reported in February. This year the industry is predicted to grow slightly lower than in the past five years, recording a 4.4 percent revenue growth of $803.8 million.

Food trucks have captured a solid customer base in novelty-seeking consumers for their trendy food offerings—mostly gourmet soups and sandwiches to fusion cuisine items—which consumers only get to sample in the confines of niche restaurants.

Mobi Munch co-founder Aaron Noveshen predicts that about 10 percent of top 200 restaurant franchises will be sending out their own versions of mobile trucks in the next two years. "I can already count eight that do," he tells 

The preceding article is from one of our external contributors. It does not represent the opinion of Benzinga and has not been edited.


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