Pie Five Pizza Co., a subsidiary of Pizza Inn Holdings Inc., has awarded the first multiunit franchise agreement for Florida to develop 10 locations. The deal was made with Florida entrepreneur L. Gale Lemerand, who plans to debut the brand in markets such as Orlando, Gainesville, Melbourne and Daytona.

"Pie Five is making a bold entry into the state with a great business leader, and soon local residents will get a taste of an award-winning pizza dining experience," said Randy Gier, CEO of Pie Five.

Lemerand is a sole owner or partner in 29 restaurants in Florida. They include 17 Stonewood Grill & Tavern restaurants, five Peach Valley Café locations, four Houligan's sports bars, as well as Perkins Family Restaurant and Bakery, a tappas restaurant called The Dish and Ormond Wine Company. He previously owned one of the country's largest insulation companies that he sold to a Fortune 200 company.

Lemerand is also one of the biggest donors to the University of Florida where a scholarship fund, the street to Gator stadium, the athletic center, the football practice field and a number of other gifts bear his name.

"Gale's success speaks volumes," Gier said, "not only for his national business expertise and his impressive restaurant achievements, but also for his community involvement. Pie Five is proud to be a part of Florida's future with him leading that presence."

When Lemerand visited several Pie Five locations in Texas, he decided to bring the concept to Florida.

"I thought, 'How can you make a really good pizza in five minutes?'" he said. "They've got it nailed. It's a great pizza and a great product."

Read more about franchising and growth.

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