A candy chain's sweet success

  @FortuneMagazine June 13, 2013: 7:00 AM ET
CAN01 jeff rubin

Jeff Rubin had his epiphany in the candy aisle at CVS.


Jeff Rubin , the founder and CEO of It'Sugar, the fastest-growing retail candy store in the world, is holding a box of sour bubblegum depicting the derrière of a cartoon dromedary. Printed on the box in bright cartoon letters are the words CAMEL BALLS. "This is just the right amount of camel and right amount of ball," Rubin says, giggling. The Justin Timberlake song "SexyBack" is playing. This shop, one of 45 worldwide (along with another 30 outposts inside department stores), is on Manhattan's Upper West Side. The Camel Balls, like the 27-pound anaconda-size gummy worm ($150) and the Laffy Taffy leather jacket bedecked in Swarovski crystals ($2,499) and the entire section of edible underwear, are not typical of candy emporiums. None of these products is for children -- and that's exactly the point.

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