SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.—Eatza Pizza said it plans to add at least 18 new buffet units throughout the United States in 2006.

According to a news release, markets in line for expansion include Utah, New Mexico, Florida, Mississippi and North Carolina.

The 20-store chain spent much of the past two years rebranding itself and developing a new prototype unit.

Eatza Pizza president Ron Stillwell credited franchise development vice president Ronn Cordova with attracting a slew of new franchisees to the company.

"Last year at this time we had approximately 50 restaurants open or under development, and we now have more than 100," Stillwell said. "A great deal of credit for this increased activity is directly attributed to Ronn's efforts."

Last year the company introduced a new menu that included Chicago deep dish-style pizza, Sicilian garlic cheese bread, fried chicken, breaded and fried potatoes, and a variety of side dishes including baked beans, kernel corn and green beans, and cinnamon rolls.

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