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How SoBol Supports the Communities It Serves Throughout COVID-19

The açai bowl brand is bringing franchisees together and creating a stronger network in order to best serve customers and help communities during this crisis.

With restaurant brands across all segments being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the açai bowl franchise SoBol has continued to navigate uncharted waters. The brand has had to temporarily close its doors at seven of its stores and has hit the pause button on opening new locations. Now, as states slowly start to reopen and lift lockdown protocols, SoBol is supporting the communities it serves and preparing franchisees to emerge from this crisis. 

“We are in a fortunate position to be able to give back to the community that has always been so supportive of us,” said SoBol Founder and CEO Jason Mazzarone. “It has been wonderful to see our team come together during this trying time to prioritize what matters most, and we know that we’ll get through this together, stronger than ever before.” 

SoBol has launched a new initiative to donate bowls to frontline healthcare workers using proceeds from the sales of their SoBol branded socks. For the past several weeks, SoBol has been giving back to the Long Island community through food donations to healthcare workers, donating more than 500 meals directly to Huntington Hospital and Stony Brook University Hospital. The brand has also partnered with Carroll's Kitchen, a nonprofit corporation that has donated over 2,000 meals to the Long Island community in order to contribute to their donations during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The brand’s socks, which can be found on their website, can be purchased for $15. Proceeds will go directly to a bowl donation to frontline workers, including doctors and nurses at local hospitals. Additionally, customers are also able to donate 10, 20 or 40 acai bowls directly to frontline workers in the Long Island area from the SoBol website. 

In order to promote these campaigns and encourage franchise owners to give back to their communities in other ways, the SoBol leadership team has been working hard to bring the franchise network closer together during this tough time. 

“The leadership team is doing everything we can to stay in touch, and we’ve begun communication on a more structured basis,” said Brand President Paul Gucciardo. “In addition, we have been highlighting franchisees that have been getting creative and encouraging collaboration. Communication with our franchise owners is our number one priority — we are coming up with new and exciting ways to improve promotions and operations.”

To support SoBol franchisees as they prepare the eventual end of this crisis, the SoBol team is continuing to come up with campaigns to ensure that customers are satisfied. For example, the brand’s new POS platform allows franchisees to provide customers with streamlined digital ordering, promotional updates, surveys and more.

“We've been providing franchisees with marketing collateral and are supporting them through Yelp, Google and third-party updates to ensure that their customers are aware of what they're offering, which we will continue to do as they open their stores,” said Gucciardo. “We handle all marketing tools, and our franchise owners can use a number of ads and content that we have created during this time to reach out to their community.” 

As SoBol continues to support franchisees and their communities through the COVID-19 pandemic, the brand’s franchise network has only grown stronger.

“We have so many franchise owners that have truly reengaged with their stores due to the crisis,” said Gucciardo. “They're thinking in different, creative ways, and they appreciate our support and are using these resources to benefit their communities.” 

The startup costs for a SoBol franchise range from $174,800 to $249,500. The franchise fee is $25,000. To learn more about franchising with SoBol, visit