Just like mushrooms, franchise outlets nowadays appear almost overnight.
While it's a very successful business idea, it took quite a few decades to become the concept we know today.
Dating back to the 1800's, franchising began with Isaac Merrit Singer whose surname is still known today in sewing circles.
Through the years, many people altered the concept and today we have coffee specialists, fast food outlets, clothing franchises and many more.
What goes into making a pizza franchise grow from a small company to a big business is very much the same as what goes into making a good pizza.
Panos Mourdoukoutas, a contributing writer for Forbes, wrote a very thoughtful article on the five things that make a franchise successful and his findings go very well with what makes a pizza delizioso.
Pizza Franchise Business Model
To start with, the right business model is needed. While there might be a gap in the market for a pizza franchise, you need to offer something different from your competitors. Both your business and your pizza should have a good base. The Food Lab recommends that you decide on a style of pizza that you want to serve to your customers.
Scaling your Pizza Franchise
The next thing Mourdoukoutas recommends for franchise success is scale. The more you make and sell of your product, the lower your costs will be. While you don't physically put money in your pizza, using the wrong amount of flour can make or break your pizza - sometimes literally.
Using a scale to measure your ingredients will help you make that perfect base and also save you money as your stock will last longer.
According to Emily Boyce from BBC, the citizens of Naples are responsible for introducing the world to the Margherita style pizza. She explained that the Neapolitans invented the style in 1889 to honour the king's wife, also named Margherita. This particular style of pizza consists of cheese and tomato only. Your franchise, however, needs to have more variety than that. That is the third factor that makes both franchise and pizza success go hand-in-hand.
A bigger scope of products will present a higher return on assets as you cater for a wider market.
While many people travel to Italy to taste authentic Italian pizza, your franchise should be more accessible than that. Choosing the perfect location can be one of the top advantages your franchise can have over your competitors. The location of your dough before and when you bake it can also be beneficial to your end product. After forming your dough, The Food Lab suggests storing it in the fridge.
This will help improve the flavour and browning agents in your dough. When it's time for the oven, Emily Boyce says nothing beats a proper wood-burning oven.
Five Tips for Running a Successful Franchise
Now that you have decided on a style, a few variants of it and found a great location, you are ready for the final element of a successful pizza franchise. Emily Boyce and many other chefs all agree that sauce should be used sparingly. A base should not be overloaded and become soggy through too many toppings. The same applies to introducing your franchise to the market. If, like mushrooms, your franchise pops up everywhere at once, you leave little room for your company to grow.
Opening up a few well-located branches leaves room for future franchises.
Finding the Right Franchise Location
The most successful saturation of the market begins with choosing the right business model, making sure your scale is benefiting your company cost-wise, having a big scope of products and mixing them all together in the right spot and soon you will have people from Italy coming to you.
A Very Successful Example
Instep the story of the very successful Scooters Pizza, and the start of Taste Holdings
In 2004 Scooters Pizza franchise opened, I remember the day they opened in Durban around the corner from where I used to live, one of the first franchises backing their delivery time or your pizza free. Pizza to your door in under 45 minutes and hot.
I was never lucky enough to get that free pizza as they always delivered on time. By 2004 Scooters had expanded to Gauteng, with roughly 20 stores and growing, and winning the FASA newcomer Franchisor and Brand Builders of the year award.
2005 saw Scooters become a multi branded business and buy all Maxi's restaurants and following from this Scooters Pizza is renamed to Taste and listed on the Alt JSE.
Scooters kept winning awards. A simple model made successful.
2008 through to 2010, Taste acquires numerous household names and diversifying at the same time. With NWJ, certain strategic BJ's converted to Maxi's, Buon Gusto and St Elmo's. Taste invested heavily and to top it off, 10-year anniversary of Scooters Pizza.
More awards for Scooters Pizza in 2011 and R750 Million system-wide sales. Taste move to the main board of the JSE.
2012 saw Taste expand its distribution network with two new depots. More acquisitions of The Fish & Chip Co and a reported 27% compound annual growth for last six years. In
2014 Taste acquires Zebro's Chicken. Another well-established franchise of 15 years.
Taste signs a master franchise agreement for 30 years with Dominos Pizza and acquires Aurther Kaplan and World Finest Watches.
Carlo Gonzaga is inducted into the FASA hall of fame, the founder of Scooter Pizza.
2015 Taste signs a 25-year agreement with Starbucks in SA and The Fish & Chip Co awarded top Fish Brand in the take away category.
Scooters and StElmo's rebrand starts by converting them into Domino's Pizza, one of the largest pizza franchises in the world.
2016 has 3 new Starbucks open in Rosebank, Mall of Africa and Menlyn Maine. With further Starbucks opening in 2017 and the completion of Scooters Pizza and St Elmo's rebrand to Domino's Pizza.
A simple franchise concept, great service and great tasting product has seen the success of Taste Holdings. The story summed up sounds very simple, but like any business , the right people and focus on the right areas see's Taste deliver positive results.