WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Inc. is expanding in Southern California. The company on Jan. 21 announced it has signed a development agreement with existing franchisee Great Circle Family Foods, L.L.C. to develop 20 new donut shops in Southern California over the next seven years.

A Krispy Kreme franchise partner since 1998, Great Circle Family Foods currently operates 11 Krispy Kreme shops in Southern California, making it the company’s third largest domestic franchisee.

The planned shops are expected to feature Krispy Kreme’s new small factory design, including a drive-thru. All of the planned shops will offer more than a dozen varieties of Krispy Kreme’s donuts, as well as a complete menu of coffee, Krispy Kreme Chillers, iced beverages and specialty drinks.

The announcement comes a week after James Morgan, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Krispy Kreme, told participants at the Integrated Corporate Relations XChange meeting in Orlando, Fla., that the Winston-Salem-based company now has the building blocks in place to start growing its domestic business “at a more rapid pace.”

“Our domestic growth has not been nearly as dramatic as has been our international growth, but that is now starting to change,” Mr. Morgan said on Jan. 13. “We have spent the last five years rethinking our domestic business model, building our marketing capabilities, coming to better understand our consumers, and improving our day-to-day execution skills. The building blocks are now in place to start growing our domestic business at a more rapid pace.”

Krispy Kreme has more than 810 locations in 24 countries, including 94 company stores in the United States.