January 16, 2013 // Franchising.com // WHITEWATER, WI – Toppers Pizza, a rapidly growing eclectic pizza delivery franchise brand, is proud to announce the opening of its 50th franchise location. Marking its first location in the state of Michigan, the brand is continuing to aggressively expand its pizza-print throughout the United States. To celebrate its 50th unit, Toppers will offer 50% off all House pizzas and Topperstix at every location across the country on February 5, 2013.
Additionally, the Ann Arbor store (607. East Williams Street) will hold a grand opening extravaganza unmatched by the big guns on February 14, 2013. The festivities include $1 1-Topping MyZa’s (a personal sized pizza) and Single orders of Topperstix (cheesy breadstix) for all guests in attendance.
“We are very proud of this milestone and cannot wait for the people of Michigan to taste our pizza for the first time,” said Scott Gittrich, CEO of the emerging chain and former Domino’s Pizza delivery driver. “We would not be here if it wasn’t for our extremely loyal fans and customers. With this celebration, we want to reward them [customers] for their support and dedication to our brand.”
When Gittrich decided to rebel against big box pizza chains, he did by personally testing every aspect of his pizza-concept. Starting off with the simple goal of recapturing the magic of a made-from-scratch pizza in a sea of cookie cutter chains, Gittrich laid the foundation for his vision. Nearly 20 years later, his Whitewater, Wisconsin-based pizza brand is showcasing its growth potential, as it now comes armed with 50 locations.
Along with its ability to tap into the most influential demographic, 18-34 year olds, Toppers has made a name for itself as an innovator of eclectic and unique menu items. Differentiating itself from the competition, 70% of Toppers’ sales come from items not traditionally found on competitors’ menus.
The new location will be owned and operated by lifelong Toppers fans, Mahmoud Baydoun, who is a former operator of Subway, and his partner Waseem Younis.
“The team effort and support system that comes with Toppers is very alluring to me; there is no need to feel alone or vulnerable in opening up something new,” explains Baydoun. “My goal first and foremost is to get started and open up an effective and popular location. In the future I’d like to expand to multiple locations.”
The new Ann Arbor location is part of a larger growth strategy for Toppers. Corporate forecasts a larger presence throughout Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Texas, with the first location in Arkansas set for 2013. The company has already contracted 15 new locations to be built by the end of 2013, with the ultimate goal of opening a total of 30 in that same year. Additionally, the brand plans to reach 150 locations by the end of 2015 and 500 by 2020.
“As we grow, like a balloon, from Wisconsin into the rest of the nation, we want to maintain our core culture, our brand evolution, and our methodical growth pattern,” said Scott Iversen, Toppers Pizza Director of Marketing.
With the pizza industry pushing the $40 billion dollar plus mark, Toppers plans on grabbing a piece of the pie. By pushing their individuality, creativity of concept, and remarkable service, the eclectic pizza brand has been able to reach its 50th unit with no plans of slowing down.
“The reason for our success is simple, meaning that we are not one of the ‘Wal-Marts’ of the industry. The big chains have lost their identity and brand connection,” Gittrich said. “Our customers are fanatical about our brand. Our quirkiness and edginess has given our brand character and enabled us to reach this remarkable milestone.”
With a mission to be the best pizza company in the world by killing it on every detail of the customer experience, Toppers Pizza is a 50-unit eclectic pizza delivery franchise brand, headquartered in Whitewater, WI. Toppers takes a unique approach to the crowded pizza segment by appealing to the young, and young at heart, in an irreverent way that unquestionably separates them from the competition. Ranked No. 343 in Entrepreneur Magazine’s top 500 franchises and one of the Nation’s Restaurant News 50 Breakout Chains for 2013,Toppers’ menu includes 18 house pizzas; the franchise’s signature product line Topperstix; Oven-Toasted Grinders; Buffalo Wings; Q'Zas (a pizza style quesadilla); and cold drinks. The brand has strongly established itself in Wisconsin, and is now in the midst of Midwest and national domination. By focusing on Toppers’ demographic friendly markets, Toppers is able to continue building a fanatical relationship with its customer base. For more information on Toppers, visit www.toppers.com.
SOURCE Toppers Pizza