Despite surging gas prices in the face of global disaster and conflict, restaurant operators across the U.S. are trying to stay focused on other challenges—even though gas prices have a slew of direct and indirect impacts on the restaurant business.
As sports fans across America prepare their picks for the 2011 men’s college basketball tournament, Pizza Hut and hungry pizza lovers are rooting for the upset of a lifetime—a No. 16 seed defeating a No. 1 seed in the second round. If history is made this year, Pizza Hut is prepared to reward America with free pizza.
“If a 16 seed wins, America wins,” says Kurt Kane, chief marketing officer at Pizza Hut. “An upset of this magnitude would be an unmatched sports moment, which deserves an unmatched celebration from Pizza Hut.”
What’s happened to pizza’s major players?
In 2000, the QSR 50 Report, this magazine’s annual ranking of the nation’s top quick-service brands, showed a robust American appetite for pizza, a category trailing only burger joints in representation. With pizza chains claiming four of the list’s top 15 slots and 12 of the top 50, the segment seemed poised to maintain its spot as a 21st century quick-service staple.
After an abundance of successful business ventures, David Lobel founded Sentinel Capital Partners, a private equity firm that specializes in buying and building middle-market companies in the U.S. and Canada. Along with other prosperous investments, Lobel and senior partner and cofounder John McCormack have made their mark in the quick-serve industry. With past investments touching brands like Taco Bell and Church’s Chicken, Sentinel and portfolio company Southern California Pizza own 224 Pizza Hut restaurants in the Los Angeles area—the third-largest franchisee in the Pizza Hut system.
Marketing executives have known for years that using hard-at-work, nice-looking, real employees in a TV spot can symbolize a brand’s corporate commitment to quality and service. But any marketer getting ready to take this idea to his ad people should first take some time to consider that using real employees in a brand’s advertising can be a tricky proposition.
Back in mid-2002, optimism reigned at Tricon Global Restaurants, the predecessor to Yum! Brands.
The Louisville, Kentucky–based company had just purchased nearly 1,000 A&W restaurants and 1,200 Long John Silver’s units for $320 million, convinced that the recognizable names and multibranding possibilities could raise average unit volumes as much as 30 percent and produce upward of $5 billion in incremental system sales alongside nearly $1 billion in additional shareholder value.
But the promise never came true.
The first day of the New Year marks a date stuffed with ones, 1/1/11. And Pizza Hut is prepared to help consumers celebrate the unusual day with its Stuffed Crust Pizza. The company is giving away 1,111 Stuffed Crust Pizzas on 1/1/11. This offer kicks off as Pizza Hut launches a special deal on its Stuffed Crust Pizza; for a limited time, a 1-topping Stuffed Crust Pizza is just $10.
Friendly Ice Cream Corporation announced today that James M. Parrish, a seasoned restaurant executive who most recently served as COOof Church’s Chicken, has joined the company as executive vice president company operations.
This season, the holiday lights will be hung with care in hopes that Pizza Hut's Cheesy Bites Pizza soon will be there. Pizza Hut is announcing the search for America's favorite holiday light displays in honor of the return of Cheesy Bites Pizza, a pizza surrounded by 28 pullable, poppable, dippable cheese-filled bites.
The problem with snacks nowadays is that they no longer know their proper place.
Based on the results of a survey conducted by market research firm Technomic earlier this year, these uppity, stopgap appetite-tamers are muscling in on what used to be mealtime turf. Indeed, more than two out of five consumers told the company that they often either skip one meal each day or replace one meal per day with snacks. That, for those of you watching at home, is an awful lot of lost meal occasions.