We’ll reach 1,000 units, grow beyond our traditional franchise model and more to get ahead of the top pizza chains while growing our customer base
Some things at Marco’s Pizza will never change. The quality of our food, for instance. Our Hello Primo® brand positioning demonstrates the care we take in the way we create our delicious pizzas, subs, salads and wings. But as the business climate changes, we’re prepared to maintain our position as one of the top pizza chains in the country.
We’ve got big goals for 2019, and we’ll be ready to pass one of our most exciting milestones in Q1: We’ll reach the 1,000-unit mark. Not only is that a tremendous accomplishment, it also signals what we hope will be another year of record growth.
“Our goal is to grow approximately 200 units in 2019, and now that Marco’s is reaching over 1,000 units, we are looking to grow in several different ways,” says Ron Stilwell, Chief Development Officer.
More value for multi-unit investors
While we will continue to grow the traditional single-unit franchise model, we’re also looking for people with multi-unit or multi-brand experience who understand that Marco’s would be a great pizza franchise to add to their portfolio of brands.
Pizza is a $46 billion dollar industry, and Marco’s is one of the leaders in that industry thanks to our continued momentum in growth and sales and our availability of prime territories.
“These are great reasons for multi-unit operators to attach themselves to Marco’s,” Stilwell says. “One of the other factors is, even though we’re almost at a thousand stores, we still have a lot of territory available so large, multi-unit operators are able to find an area of the country where they can grow multiple units. What we’re looking for is multi-unit agreements with people that have the ability, both financially and structurally, to be able to take on a large number of units in a short period of time.”
Where innovation counts
As other top pizza chains race to incorporate technology in ways that will draw more customers, Marco’s Pizza is planning some new high-tech features over the next year that will be both customer-facing and helpful for running the business. We don’t want to divulge details just yet; look for news in the coming year.
“One of Marco’s cultural beliefs is innovation,” says Stilwell. “We have new things coming that will help attract new customers, and also labor savings in the franchise community as well.”
One of the biggest innovations, he says, is a restructure of the Franchise Development Department that will incorporate ideas for labor savings, new store design and value-engineering, which is so important right now for our franchisees.
“We are implementing a value-engineering initiative to drive down the costs of our restaurants even as costs continue to rise, such as stainless steel with the new tariffs. The value-engineering is simply brick-and-mortar and equipment, which has nothing to do with changing the quality of our product. The quality is sacred at Marco’s and will never be touched.”
Another change in the upcoming year is a renewed focus on non-traditional sites, which might include anything from amusement parks to high-end convenience stores. “We want to be able to get Marco’s Pizza out to as many people in as many points of distribution as possible,” says Stilwell.