Growth Ready Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Poised for Franchising
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Growth Ready Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Poised for Franchising

Growth Ready Grimaldi’s Pizzeria Poised for Franchising

Grimaldi's Pizzeria CEO Joseph Ciolli has big things in store for his iconic brand primed to expand on the national stage through franchising. 

"The time is right for us to bring Grimaldi's to neighborhoods across the U.S. and we are looking for franchisees to help us do so," Ciolli says. "My future vision is to grow across the country so that people all over America can enjoy Grimaldi's pizza anytime they want."

With more than 40 restaurants in 11 states, coast-to-coast, Grimaldi's Pizzeria is renowned for its New York-style pizzas baked to perfection in custom-built coal-fired brick ovens. The launch of Grimaldi's domestic franchising program in April has the brand hungry for more growth with experienced franchise partners. 

 "We’re looking for hospitality groups that have the infrastructure – one to five different brands or more—that have the know-how and understand our formula of people, product, and service," Ciolli says. "We want to make sure we get along well – so it is very dynamic."

Grimaldi's family-oriented, casual, yet upscale brand was built for franchising. With more than 100 years of pizza-making tradition, starting with its historic location in Brooklyn, New York, Grimaldi's has developed proven systems, processes, and training that delivers an unmatched guest experience. 

Each restaurant captures the essence and energy of the original pizzeria, including the legendary centerpiece coal-brick oven and custom water system designed to replicate New York City water, essential to achieve the pizzeria's authentic, award-winning taste. 

Among many accolades, Grimaldi's has earned the "Best Pizza" nod by Food Network and Zagat and the prestigious American Academy of Hospitality Sciences Five Star Diamond Award recognition.

Grimaldi's earns its culinary reputation by producing hand-crafted pizzas, calzones, and antipasto, along with a variety of delicious salads and house-made desserts, including its legendary cheesecakes. Restaurants also feature a full bar offering specialty cocktails, craft beers, and a robust wine list, including its signature Mille Gradi red blend, specially produced in Tuscany, Italy.

With a solid franchise roadmap in place, Grimaldi's stands primed for expansion, recently bringing seasoned industry veteran Michael Flaum on board as director of franchise development.

Flaum brings a wealth of comprehensive strategy expertise and executive leadership experience to Grimaldi's. Flaum developed and led 125 multi-state operating units as an owner, area developer, and multi-unit franchisee for Cold Stone Creamery. He also served as president and CEO of Arlington Rack and Packaging, a multi-state manufacturing company, and owned a strategic development/advisory firm. In his new role, Flaum will oversee the brand's franchise development amongst qualified operators in markets throughout the United States.

"As this is a new initiative for our brand, I am excited to lead the expansion of the Grimaldi’s brand to new neighborhoods all over the US,” says Flaum. “My passion is working with franchisees and assisting them in developing the Grimaldi’s Pizzeria brand in their markets by opening successful units based on our scalable business model. The Grimaldi’s brand has such a rich history and legendary pizza. It has generated a lot of interest in the franchising community.”   

 With best in class culinary offerings and a highly capable leadership team, Grimaldi's is set to soar to new heights. 

"We have experienced solid unit economics, proven processes, and lots of loyal brand ambassadors across the United States," notes Ciolli. "Sophisticated multi-unit operators understand these are important components in choosing a franchise brand as a partner. We are excited about the future."

 For more information on owning a Grimaldi's Pizzeria franchise, visit the franchising website at


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Published: October 8th, 2019

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