MOD Pizza announced Wednesday that it has been acquired by Elite Restaurant Group after reportedly being close to bankruptcy.

The fast casual, with around 500 units in 28 states and Canada, said that it has used the past few months to rightsize its portfolio, refresh its brand, and further elevate guest experiences. The chain added that it’s made “steady improvements to the overall business.”

“MOD is a beloved brand with a strong following. We’re excited to work with Elite Restaurant Group to strengthen MOD’s future,” said MOD Pizza CEO Beth Scott, who joined the company early in 2024.

Elite Restaurant Group has previously acquired entities like burger concept Slater’s 50/50, Mediterranean chains Daphne’s and Noon Mediterannean, Gigi’s Cupcakes, and pizza concepts Project Pie and Patxi’s Pizza.

“MOD has an outstanding culture and passionate, loyal guests and employees,” Elite Restaurant Group founder Michael Nakhleh said in a statement. “We recognize the inherent value this represents and look forward to helping MOD write the next chapter in its history.”

Bloomberg earlier reported that MOD was nearing bankruptcy. The pizza chain was said to be working to improve its capital structure and “exploring all options.

Earlier this year MOD Pizza closed 26 restaurants across various states. All were company-owned except one. According to Scott, the closures primarily affected underperforming locations that had struggled for some time. Employees were offered severance packages where transfers weren’t possible or declined. The closures spanned 10 states and Washington, D.C., with notable concentrations in California, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Dallas. Despite speculation, Scott clarified that these decisions were not directly tied to California’s new $20 minimum wage law for fast-food workers, although rising wages did impact some of their closed locations.

MOD Pizza had planned to go public in November 2021 but ultimately did not proceed. Leadership changes included Scott assuming the CEO role in early 2024 and succeeding cofounder Scott Svenson, who transitioned to executive chairperson.

Scott and Allie Svenson founded MOD Pizza in 2008 and built it into the largest fast-casual pizza chain in America.

Fast Casual, Finance, Pizza, Story, MOD Pizza