Since its creation 70 years ago, family-owned Shipley Do-Nuts has grown from a small wholesaler to a chain of 200 stores in six southern states. Officials of the Houston-based company like to call the South
"the doughnut belt."
Shipley is run today by the founder's grandson. It's survived low-carbohydrate diet fads and outlasted bigger rivals. In fact, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts is quitting the Houston market after eight years.
The local company has endured by sticking to nearly the same recipe that Arkansas native Lawrence Shipley Senior devised in the 1930s, and by catering to its franchisees.
Lawrence Shipley sold hand-cut doughnuts to grocers and opened his first retail store in the 1940s. When his son, Lawrence "Bud" Shipley Junior, died last year, his son, Lawrence W. Shipley the Third took over as president. He plans to stick to the chain's formula for success.