5 pizza brands explore new territories
Pizza's worldwide appeal needs no further proof than the weekly parade of pizza restaurant opening announcements. In fact, at least five established brands have announced expansions over the last week or so, beginning with Grimaldi's plan to open five sites in the United Arab Emirates over the next five years as part of a global expansion plan being executed by the chain, a news release said.
Grimaldi's has partnered with Tablez Food Company to make this first movement beyond the borders of the North American continent. Grimaldi's said it chose Tablez, which specializes in developing restaurant chains in the UAE, for its experience and track record with the brand.
"Since its inception, Grimaldi's has been singularly focused on serving exemplary food to its guests. That is why we recognized this international franchise opportunity as being an ideal partnership," Grimaldi's Pizzeria CEO Joseph Ciolli said in the news release. "Not only will we be able to treat new UAE customers to a truly uncompromised, coal-fired New York pizza experience, but also benefit from the reassurance that comes from working with Tablez, far and away the UAE's finest food and beverage group."
The restaurant said it is engaging with other groups for additional global expansion of the concept in areas of southeast Asia, South America, Central America, Europe, Mexico, Canada and Australia.
Meanwhile, back stateside, a number of other concepts are expanding on local turf, including Pizza Inn, which is returning to Waycross, Georgia, to open its fifth restaurant in the Peach Blossom state.
The new site is operated by Franchisee Jack Saussy and General Manager Tonya Dean, who both worked to recently serve 200 local leaders at a restaurant gathering there.
"After nearly 16 years, Pizza Inn is excited to be back and serving the Waycross community," Saussy said in the release. "We look forward to building upon many years of tradition and once again making great pizza and great memories with the local community."
"It's exciting to watch the legendary Pizza Inn brand continue its growth across the country," said Pizza Inn President Bob Bafundo. "Jack and his team are already doing a great job of making their restaurant a gathering place for the Waycross community."
The nearly 60-year-old brand is loved by fans for innovations, including what a news release describes as the "first dessert pizza" — the pizzert.
Pizza Inn's sister brand, Pie Five, is debuting in Waco, Texas, this Wednesday at a site on South Fifth Street near Baylor University, a news release said.
The location is the third franchise owned by Chirag Patel and Sudesh Patidar, who operate sites in Georgetown and Pflugerville.
"Waco is such a great town and it's been growing like crazy, but they still don't have a pizza concept like Pie Five," Patel said in the release.
Oath Craft Pizza
Boston's Oath Craft Pizza will also inaugurate its fifth Massachusetts location in on Harvard Street in Coolidge Corner this Thursday, a news release said.
Customers will be treated to half-priced meals as a celebration on Thursday. Oath is known for its offbeat combinations, including an avocado-oil seared crust as well as seasonal and dessert pizzas.
And finally, the infinitely growing Blaze pizza announced that it is opening sites in Iowa and Pennsylvania. The chain's fifth location in the Keystone State opens Thursday on Douglas Parkway in Erie, with a Friday free build-your-own pizza event. On Thursday, the chain will open its third Iowa location in Ames, again followed by a free build-your-own pie event Friday. The location there is located near Iowa State University on Lincoln Way. The chain already has two other sites in Des Moines.