Little Caesars Enterprises Inc. today celebrates another store grand opening under the Little Caesars Veterans Program, as former United States Army Military Police Specialist E4, Richard Gubish, opens his doors for business at 1517 Easton Avenue in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

“I am excited to be a part of a strong and growing franchise system that is dedicated to helping U.S. military veterans,” Gubish says. “I look forward to offering Bethlehem residents high quality pizza at a great value that is ready when they are, with no waiting or need to call ahead.”

The Little Caesars Veterans Program was created to thank veterans for their service and provide them with career opportunities when they transition to civilian life or seek a career change. It grants honorably discharged, non-service-disabled veterans who qualify as Little Caesars franchisees, such as Gubish, a benefit of $10,000. Honorably discharged service-disabled veterans who qualify are eligible for a benefit of up to approximately $68,000.

“With talented veterans like Richard joining the Little Caesars team, the Little Caesars Veterans Program continues to grow and give veterans business ownership opportunities,” says David Scrivano, president, Little Caesar Enterprises Inc. “The skills Richard developed in the military such as teamwork, dedication and a familiarity with processes will help him become an effective Little Caesars franchisee.”

Joining the United States Army immediately after high school, Gubish served from 1986 to 1990. He transitioned into civilian life as a city bus driver and a small retail business operator in Bethlehem. Gubish learned about the Little Caesars Veteran Program through his brother, a former manager of a Little Caesars restaurant. Gubish was impressed with the commitment the organization has towards sharing its proven processes through a six-week training program for franchisees.

“With the nation experiencing challenging economic times, I realized that it was the perfect time for me to begin a new career and go into business for myself,” Gubish adds. “I am excited to have the opportunity to work with a growing company, provide a great value to my customers and use the leadership skills I learned in the military to grow my new pizza business.”

Some of the menu items Gubish will feature in his store include HOT-N-READY Pizza, Crazy Bread, Caesar Wings, and Caesar Dips.

In one of the largest U.S. quick serve restaurant research studies in 2007, Little Caesars was named the “best value for the money” of all quick serve restaurant chains. Sandelman & Associates’ Quick-Track research study tracks key consumer behavioral and attitudinal measures for all major fast-food chains. Surveys were conducted among more than 84,000 quick service restaurant customers in 70 major markets across the U.S. Little Caesars was also named highest rated pizza chain for “Convenience of Locations” and “Speed of Service.”

Little Caesars was recently listed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) as one of the best loan performers among franchises with more than 60 SBA-guaranteed loans.

Since Launching on Veterans Day 2006, interest has remained high for the Little Caesars Veterans Program. Currently, more than 30 veterans have been approved to become Little Caesars franchisees and more than 2,000 inquiries have been made about the program. Several more U.S. military veterans are expected to open stores in the coming months under the program.

The Center for Veterans Enterprise (part of the Department of Veterans Affairs), Marine For Life (an organization that helps Marines and Sailors transition to civilian life), and the International Franchise Association (through its VetFran program) are points of contact for the Little Caesars Veterans Program. They can provide information about the requirements and qualifications of becoming a Little Caesars franchisee.

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