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Anne Beiler

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Anne Beiler is the founder and former CEO of Auntie Anne’s Inc. She started twisting pretzels in 1987 to support her husband’s vision to offer free counseling services in their community. This single farmer’s market stand eventually grew into Auntie Anne’s Inc., the world’s largest hand-rolled soft pretzel franchise with over 1,000 locations worldwide.

Beiler was born in 1949 in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. She was raised in an Amish-Mennonite family of 10. Becoming a business owner of a multi-million dollar company was never in her sights. She only began working at the Burtonsville, Maryland Farmer’s Market to support her family while her husband, Jonas, pursued his dream to build a community counseling center.

Beiler’s journey to become a leading female entrepreneur before pretzels got involved. In September 1975, Beiler and her husband loss a child – a parent’s worst nightmare. Beiler propelled in years of darkness during which she nearly lost her husband, her family and her faith. Out of her pain came a purpose and desire to persevere towards personal and professional success.

An early concept of Auntie Anne’s Pretzels launched in 1988 at a farmer’s market in Downingtown, Pennsylvania. After leaving the Burtonsville location and buying her own stand for $6,000, Beiler almost abandoned selling pretzels because they tasted awful. She thought of making pizza and strombolis until Jonas experimented with the pretzel recipe.

After introducing the new taste, one day they made $2,000 just selling the fresh-baked pretzels. This humble beginning laid the groundwork for what would become Auntie Anne’s, Inc.

Beiler rose to the top of the business world with only an eighth-grade education. She would eventually earn her GED at age 50. Ironically, the day before Beiler received her degree, she was awarded an honorary PhD. from Elizabethtown College.

She believes that Auntie Anne’s was God’s way of providing her with a platform for what she calls “the real deal.” For Beiler, the “real deal” was helping broken people like herself.

In 2005, she sold the company to her cousin Sam Beiler to spend more time with her family. During this time, she began working on her book and developed conferences for women to heal and renew their relationships with God. ‘

Beiler lives with her husband Jonas. They are the parents of two daughters, who both work for Aunt Anne’s, and they have four grandchildren.

Companies and Investments

Auntie Anne’s Pretzels (founder, former CEO).

Lessons Learned

If you stay true to your values and purpose, you will get to profit.

Inspiring Quotes

Anne Beiler's Quotes

How can a pretzel be that good? I dont know. I believe we were put here to make an impact in the business world. People are drawn to a company that is not totally selfish. The invisible part of Auntie Annes is what attracts people to us.

Anne Beiler

Have faith in God. It will make you dig deeper and become a better leader.

Anne Beiler

Auntie Annes is a modern-day business miracle that never should have happened.

Anne Beiler

My philosophy is: Life is hard, but God is good. Try not to confuse the two.

Anne Beiler

I never went to college. But the structure I grew up with was planted so deep that when it came to doing business, I knew how to be disciplined, create teamwork, and persevere. It set me up to be an entrepreneur and a successful franchiser.

Anne Beiler

Influential Books


Husband, God