April 12, 2017 // Franchising.com // Phoenix - My Pie neighborhood pizzeria plans to open six new franchises in Utah, including two this year and four over the next three to four years, says My Pie CEO John Merendino. With locations in Phoenix, Tempe and Gilbert, the Arizona-based My Pie – Pizza Your Way chain of fast-casual pizza restaurants also expanded into Nevada and Nebraska in 2016 with openings in Reno and Omaha. A second location was just announced in Reno with more stores are planned in Omaha.
Founded in 2012, My Pie Pizza bases its success on the concept of offering customers a personal, customizable dining experience with New York-style pizza made from authentic Italian recipes that include fresh, high-quality ingredients - and made fast: My Pie pizzas are baked in two minutes in 800-degree ovens.
Travis and Alicia Johnson, of Centerville, Utah, have signed a six-unit development agreement that includes five units in Salt Lake City and one in St. George. The couple bring a unique synergy to their new My Pie franchise plans, with Travis’ experience in finance and operations and Alicia’s background in design.
“Collectively, we’re anxious to combine our strengths as we reach out to the community with the growth of a minimum of six My Pie fine casual restaurants,” says Travis. “Together, we will ensure that customers find My Pie to be their neighborhood pizzeria.”
My Pie is experiencing growth approximately 40% ahead of schedule with the fast-casual segment of the U.S. restaurant market nearly doubling the growth rate of any other dining segment in 2015 with 11.4% sales growth, according to the 2016 Top 500 Chain Restaurant Report by Technomic, the food and foodservice industry research and consulting firm. Total annual pizza sales in the U.S. exceed $44 billion.
“We are excited to welcome Travis and Alicia Johnson to the My Pie family,” says John. “At the core of our business, we advocate strong family values with a commitment to community. The Johnson’s are a perfect example of the type of partners we are cultivating. The team is thrilled with our success to date and look forward to continued growth.”
My Pie’s target audience includes business professionals, moms and families, and millennials. The millennial market in particular has fueled the fast-casual restaurant boom, demanding online-ordering and app-payment options from their ever-handy smartphones, which they also use to share photos of meals on social media.
The desire for spending more time with family and establishing a community presence led the Johnsons to explore franchising opportunities, ultimately choosing to work with My Pie. “We loved the new concept of fast-casual pizza and with it being a new concept for Utah, we wanted to further explore being franchise owners with My Pie,” says Travis.
On their way to California for Thanksgiving last year, the Johnsons had a chance to stop by the new Reno location. “Gupreet Singh, the Reno store owner, helped us feel like family. He fed and treated us as if we already owned a store,” says Travis. “We were able to see the operations, ask lots of questions and sample the menu - and our kids really liked the food and the environment.”
The Johnsons were especially drawn to My Pie’s focus on community, a team approach to business, attention to detail and cleanliness, and treating the customer like family. “From that point, we moved forward and have not looked back,” says Travis. “We’re excited to be part of the My Pie team.”
The first Salt Lake City My Pie Pizza grand opening is scheduled for August 2017. The second Reno location will open early 2018.
Learn more at pizzayourway.com. For more information about My Pie Pizza franchise opportunities, contact Sharon Mettra in Franchise Development and Sales at 480-710-9330 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE My Pie Pizza