Industry News | November 29, 2011

Uncle Maddio's Opens New Stores in Atlanta, Louisville

Uncle Maddio’s Pizza Joint, a growing pizza fast casual, announced store openings throughout Atlanta and in Louisville, Kentucky. The two-year-old, made-to-orderpizza franchise founded by Matt Andrew, one of five founding members and former president of Moe’s Southwest Grill, is on a path to unparalleled success with 60 units in development and a strategic plan to open another 17 locations before the end of 2012.

Andrew founded Uncle Maddio’s to be the premiere fast-casual restaurant for fresh, made-to-order homemade pizza, gourmet salads, and toasted paninis. Uncle Maddio’sfranchise business model is designed on what Chipotle and Moe’s did with burritos, Five Guys with hamburgers, and Starbucks with coffee, by offering the customer a better tasting, fresher, healthier, made-to-order product, served fast and affordable.

“We’re excited about building out Georgia with the addition of our Woodstock and Vinings locations because it implements our founding decision to grow from our hometown, outward,” Andrew says. “We know from the success our original store has experienced, that consumers love that we’ve returned pizza to its origins: hand-tossed pies with fresh ingredients, homemade sauces and premium toppings.  Because we use only the highest quality ingredients like hormone-free chicken, angus rib eye steak, hand-made sausages and meatballs, pizza dough and sauces made in-house, our food tastes fantastic!”

The franchise model is a hit, providing premium, affordable lunch and dinner options for families with young children, college students, and empty-nesters alike. “It’s fast, fresh, and tastes fantastic,” Andrew says. “Our meals start as little as $5.49 for a homemade pizza, served in less than six minutes to your table. Fast-casual dining is today’s consumer choice, where there’s a delicious option for everyone and meals are much higher quality than fast food.”

In addition to Georgia, Andrew’s franchise is making its debut in Louisville. Andrew has paired up with Scott Dennison, a seasoned Papa John’s franchisee who sold his units in 2001, to bring Uncle Maddio’s to Kentucky. Dennison cites the distinctiveness of the concept as a deciding factor. 

“I’ve always enjoyed the pizza franchise business,” he says. “I noticed a void in the fast-casual restaurant segment when it came to pizza. After much research, I found Uncle Maddio’s and traveled to Atlanta to meet with Matt. From the moment I walked in the store, I knew this could be something special. I’ve been blessed to have been associated with some of the brightest CEOs and executives in business and Matt has the same characteristics. I was already sold on the model, but with Matt’s leadership, it sealed the deal.”

Andrew hand-picked Dennison to open some of the brand’s first stores, citing Dennison’s deep experience and pension for success. “Scott Dennison’s unparalleled expertise in this market and his deep knowledge of the franchisebusiness industry is an asset to the brand,” Andrew says. “Uncle Maddio’s is thrilled to have him as a part of the team and as an ambassador of Uncle Maddio’s, introducing our signature pies and gourmet salads to Kentucky’s consumers.”    

The numbers in the franchise business world support Andrew’s promise of brand success. America has a love affair with pizza, making it a booming business at an estimated $32 billion in sales per year. As the second most consumed food on the planet, approximately three billion pizzas are sold in the U.S.annually, proving the industry as one of the best franchise opportunities in the market. Italian food ranks as the most popular ethnic food in the U.S. with each man, woman, and child consuming an average of 46 slices of pizza per year, equating to more than 100 acres of pizza a day. Considering that 90 percent of Americans eat pizza and they eat it for both lunch and dinner, both Georgia and Kentucky stores are expected to show strong customer approval in their respective markets. Andrew adds that he is in negotiations with operators of some of the top recognizable franchise business brands, who are looking for newfranchise opportunities.   

The original flagship Uncle Maddio’s Pizza Joint is located near Emory University in Atlanta. The 60 units in development stretch across Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Kentucky. In addition, the brand plans to expand into Alabama, Missouri, Louisiana, and Texas. Uncle Maddio’s will open 17 new locations in 2012 with a vision to grow its restaurant franchise to 500 stores in the next 10-15 years.