Bruegger's and Caribou franchisees in the dark
I've seen this before. The good news is that there is no franchisee to franchisor lawsuit that Bruegger's judges it needs to disclose. No major battles.
The bad news is that there does not appear to be an independent franchisee association disclosed for either Caribou Coffee or Bruegger's Bagel. Franchisors are required by the FTC to include these associations in their Franchise Disclosure Document if the association lets the franchisor know it exists. Without an organization with resources and a clear mandate to look our for the self-interests of franchisees, franchise owners are going to be hard pressed to separate the franchisor spin from franchisee reality on where they fit in and how this merger will likely affect them.
It is franchise owners' businesses on the line. My best guess is that they don't have a clue. This is all coming as a surprise and a wild guessing game on what's next -- not even an informed guess.