Multi-Unit Development Fuels Toppers Pizza’s Strong Second Quarter; Positions Brand for Further Expansion in Second Half of 2016

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Fast-Growing Better Pizza Franchise Continues to Steal Market Share from the Industry’s Key Players

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Toppers Pizza, the leading better pizza franchise that’s successfully taking on the nation’s largest pizza chains, is fueled by one bold mission: never settle. This motto, printed on every Toppers Pizza box, is represented in all aspects of the brand’s business, from its fearless approach to shaking up the industry with new products and flavors to its strong digital presence and loyal social media following. It has also led to a strong start for the brand’s development in the first half of 2016. In the second quarter alone, Toppers Pizza’s saw sales increase 5.2% as it added to its rapidly growing franchise system by opening the brand’s second Sioux Falls, South Dakota location and one unit in Kansas City, Missouri.

The brand also signed three additional multi-unit development franchise deals that will ultimately open up 41 new locations for business. Six of those units will be in North Carolina, 13 will be in Colorado and Wyoming and 22 will be located in Virginia and Maryland.

“We’re incredibly excited about the opportunity to continue to expand the Toppers brand nationwide. Our model and focus on multi-unit development continues to give us the chance to steal business away from the big guys in the industry,” said Scott Gittrich, founder and president of Toppers Pizza. “We’re 100 percent confident that our commitment to convenience and quality, along with our delicious, made-from-scratch products, will instantly become fan favorites in new communities across the country.”

Toppers’ expansion deal in Colorado and Wyoming is being led by Todd Geatches and Clayton Hartman, co-owners of the Rocky Top Management group. They both bring a wealth of franchise knowledge to the table—Geatches helped Papa John’s grow from 400 locations to more than 2500 in his role as district manager, and Hartman has three decades of experience addressing the complex needs of high-net worth foundations and business owners.

The brand’s expansion efforts in Virginia and Maryland are being spearheaded by Mike McLaughlin, who also spent years working for franchise concepts like Papa John’s and Five Guys Burgers & Fries. He decided to invest with Toppers in order to be a part of the next big name in the growing pizza industry.

“The infrastructure that Toppers has in place on the corporate level makes it incredibly well suited to take the brand to the national level. Its passion for creating unique menu options really separates the brand from other major chains in the industry, which is why I decided to franchise with Toppers over other pizza brands,” said McLaughlin.

That heightened level of dedication isn’t limited to Toppers’ menu. The brand also constantly works to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to technology, recently hiring its first ever vice president of information technology, Tony Ellis. As a key member of the brand’s leadership team, he will take the brand’s overall technology strategy, innovation and execution to the next level. His first priority is creating a cloud-first and mobile-first approach to technology. He’ll also be the driving force behind Toppers’ efforts to launch a next generation e-commerce platform.

“Seamless technology is essential for any organization, and it’s something that Toppers Pizza has always excelled at. That’s why I’m thrilled to build on the brand’s strong momentum by making sure its digital presence is helping Toppers grow at a rapid rate,” said Ellis. “Offering superior technology to both our customers and local franchise owners is just another way that the brand outshines the competition in the pizza industry.”

Toppers Pizza’s strong second quarter builds off the momentum it created from one of its most successful years to date. In 2015, 73 percent of Toppers’ stores broke sales records. That impressive growth led to the brand being named one of the top-five fastest-growing brands in the entire limited service pizza restaurant category of the 2016 Technomic Top 500 Restaurant Chain Report, one of QSR Magazine’s Top Franchise Deals and one of the top food and beverage franchises by the Franchise Business Review. The brand also recently celebrated its impressive year at the annual Toppers Pizza convention in Orlando, Florida, where hundreds of corporate staff, franchisees and location team members came together to recognize the outstanding individuals who drive the brand’s expansion efforts forward with prestigious awards. Going forward into the rest of 2016, Toppers will continue to rely on its strong franchisee and team member network to continue its record-breaking growth.

“By signing these major multi-unit franchise deals and stepping up our technology efforts, Toppers Pizza is poised for rapid growth in the months and years to come,” said Gittrich. “We’re going to keep capitalizing on the momentum that’s been building all year, and continue our tradition of never settling when it comes to our development and expansion efforts.”

ABOUT TOPPERS PIZZA
Capitalizing on the booming better pizza category and fueled by the passion of Founder & President Scott Gittrich and a team of experienced industry veterans, Toppers Pizza has formulated the perfect recipe to appeal to both pizza enthusiasts and savvy investors. Headquartered in Wisconsin, Toppers is one of the fastest growing better-pizza chains in the United States. The brand has doubled in size over the last three years and completely sold out three states based on growth spurred by both existing franchisees and established multi-unit operators. Now with restaurants in 12 states and with territories immediately available across the country, Toppers is on its way to becoming a nationwide brand. Toppers is committed to quality and consistency throughout the system, and plans to maintain corporate ownership of 25 percent of all locations while the brand expands to continuously improve on best practices and product development. Toppers fanatics love the brand’s fresh, handmade and customizable pizza baked in about 6 minutes and delivered extremely fast, with more than a million combinations of fresh, high quality toppings, and the brand’s signature line of flavored Topperstix and baked Buffalo wings. In 2014, Entrepreneur Magazine ranked Toppers as one of the top 500 franchises in the U.S and QSR Magazine listed the company as one of the year’s Best Franchise Deals. For more information on how to join the rapidly growing Toppers family and for a sneak peek into the Toppers experience, visit http://www.toppersfranchise.com/.

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Lauren Boukas
No Limit Agency
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