MOD Pizza in growth mode

June 28, 2012 | by Alicia Kelso

Ally and Scott Svenson launched the first MOD Pizza nearly four years ago in Seattle. The couple returned to their home state of Washington after running a successful coffee franchise in London for 10 years.

Their eventual 65-unit Seattle Coffee Company was sold to Starbucks.

Upon their return, the Svensons noticed a gap in the top-your-own pizza space and MOD was born. The concept embraces light, simple street pizzas similar to those they often ate while living abroad.

Earlier this month, MOD opened its sixth location in the newly renovated Seattle Center Armory/Center House.

"As a Seattle based company, we are thrilled to be a part of the revitalization of the iconic Seattle Center. The new focus on creating an interesting, more inspiring, culinary experience for visitors to the Center was a strong draw for us," said Ally Svenson.

MOD Pizza's 1,500-square-foot space along the south wall of the building (next to Starbucks) features the brand's signature 800-degree display oven, seating for 50 and a 350-square-foot, south-facing outdoor patio that opens to the new Chihuly Garden and Glass Exhibit and views of the Space Needle.

Additionally, MOD plans to accelerate its expansion that includes the opening of two new stores by the end of summer, one each in downtown Redmond, Wash., and in Sammamish, Wash.

It will do so with the help of powerhouse advisors such as Lindsey Schwartz (president and CEO, Schwartz Brothers Restaurants), Adam Brotman (VP Digital Ventures, Starbucks), Jim Alling (COO T-Mobile, formerly president of U.S and International Operations, Starbucks) and Paul Twohig (COO Dunkin' Donuts, formerly Sr. VP Retail Operations, Starbucks and COO of Panera Bread).

"We have spent the last couple of years working with our five existing locations and growing customer base to better understand the potential of the MOD brand. We've been focused on evolving and retaining our operation. With the Seattle Center opening, and a plan for two additional locations to open prior to next fall, we are extremely excited to be ramping up the expansion of MOD Pizza," said Scott Svenson.

Click here to check out some photos of MOD's new Seattle Center location.

Read more about franchising and growth.

Topics: Franchising & Growth , Operations Management , Restaurant Design / Layout

Alicia Kelso / Alicia Kelso has been a professional journalist for 15 years. Her work with and has been featured in publications around the world, including Good Morning America, Voice of Russia radio, and Franchise Asia magazine.
View Alicia Kelso's profile on LinkedIn

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