Boston — Pizzeria Uno, the neighborhood pizzeria franchise known all over the world as the birthplace of Chicago-style deep dish, is launching a new restaurant conversion franchise opportunity for hotel owners. Prospective franchisees now have the chance to leverage the brand’s menu, support infrastructure and ROI potential to open a full-service Pizzeria Uno restaurant connected to their hotel.
This new growth strategy comes after the company converted three in-hotel restaurants in the Midwest into Pizzeria Uno locations earlier this year, all of which saw an impressive increase in their food and beverage sales from day one.
“As a franchise company, we are always looking for the best strategy for our concept,” says Erik Frederick, CEO of Pizzeria Uno. “Since opening these conversions, every one of them has seen significant sales growth. Their lowest week since converting would have been a record week for the restaurant pre-conversion. We have one location that is bringing in around 10 times the amount of volume on an average day.”
Chris Dellamarggio, head of marketing for Pizzeria Uno, notes that this rapid growth is due to four lucrative revenue streams: increased revenue from dine-in for hotel guests, takeout for hotel guests, takeout and/or delivery sales from the local community and dine-in revenue from people in the surrounding area who typically would not come to dine at a hotel restaurant. An additional benefit may be seen from the hotel gaining additional guests due the presence of a nationally known and respected restaurant brand.
“Hotel guests are coming in and seeing a known and loved brand that they feel comfortable dining with, and that automatically increases volume and capture rate compared to the typical non-branded restaurant,” says Dellamarggio. “The restaurants are also bringing in locals who would normally have no reason to visit the hotel. The takeout and delivery piece has benefits from both the hotel guests ordering take out from the hotel restaurant instead of from outside the hotel as well as orders coming in from people in the surrounding community.”
Best of all, since hotel operators likely already have most of the equipment and kitchen in place, Frederick says conversion costs are minimized, and owners can be confident they will have all the support they need to succeed as Pizzeria Uno franchisees.
“We have an existing infrastructure that helps franchisees with the supply chain, marketing, training, technology, build out, ongoing operations — every aspect of the business,” says Frederick. “We don’t mark up costs from our vendors and in these times, having a supply chain team and national buying power that can help in an inflationary environment is key. We are sourcing for quality and price, and pizza already has one of the lowest food costs.
This opportunity is ideal for hotel operators who want to make more from their food and beverage program. Opportunities can apply to those who are interested in converting their current hotel restaurant to a Pizzeria Uno branded restaurant, hotel operators that are building out new hotels and restaurants, or owners of existing hotels that are adding a restaurant for the first time. There are even opportunities for hotels that don’t have a kitchen because Pizzeria Uno provides a superior frozen product from their Uno Foods division. And with a tremendous amount of white space available, Frederick says Pizzeria Uno is one of the few nationally-renowned pizza concepts with room to grow all over the country.
“We are really focused on finding the right franchisees for the brand,” says Frederick. “We have a great culture here, and we are looking to partner with people who truly understand hospitality and are interested in becoming a long-lasting part of their community. The ideal franchisee will be someone with a passion for the Pizzeria Uno brand — any franchise can give you all the training guides in the world, but it is the passion that is going to make the guests feel like they are taken care of.”
Looking ahead, Frederick says interest is already growing rapidly amongst hotel owners, and the pipeline is filling up quickly as the Pizzeria Uno team aims to become the preferred pizza brand within the lodging industry. There are additional locations scheduled to open in 2022 and more in the pipeline.
“At the end of the day, hotel owners desire more sales from their F&B program,” Frederick says. “We have a great solution: bring a well-known pizza brand to the hotel. Now, the time has never been better for hotel owners to invest in a Pizzeria Uno restaurant conversion, join a brand they can be passionate about, and make more money.”
Based in Boston, Uno Restaurant Holdings Corporation includes 80 company-owned and franchised UNO Pizzeria & Grill restaurants located in 18 states, and the District of Columbia, India, and Saudi Arabia. The company also operates Uno Foods, a consumer packaged-foods business that supplies supermarkets, airlines, movie theaters, hotels, airports, travel plazas and schools with both frozen and refrigerated private-label foods and UNO branded products. For more information, visit www.unos.com.
SOURCE: Uno Restaurant Holdings Corporation