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FDD Talk: The Pieology Franchise Opportunity (Financial Performance Analysis, Estimated Costs, and Other Important Stuff You Need to Know)

by Franchise Chatter on January 4, 2016

in FDD Talk 2017: Food Franchises, Franchise Earnings, Pizza Franchises



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Pieology Assembly Line

In this FDD Talk post, you’ll learn the following:

  • Section I – Background information on the Pieology franchise opportunity, including relevant news updates
  • Section II – Estimated initial investment for a Pieology franchise, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2015 FDD
  • Section III – Presentation and analysis of Pieology’s financial performance representations, based on Item 19 of the company’s 2015 FDD, including information on the:
  • average gross sales for the trailing 13 periods from April 1, 2014 until March 31, 2015, average gross sales per period, and average weekly gross sales for the 6 company-owned Pieology Restaurants that operated during the entire 13 periods from April 1, 2014 until March 31, 2015
  • average gross sales for the trailing 13 periods from April 1, 2014 until March 31, 2015, average gross sales per period, and average weekly gross sales for the 10 franchised Pieology Restaurants that operated during the entire 13 periods from April 1, 2014 until March 31, 2015

Section I – Background Information

Pieology Looks to Grow in New and Existing Markets

Pieology, the create-your-own-pizza chain that offers its customers – who it calls “pieologists” – dozens of choices, is working on bringing its individuality to new markets while continuing to nurture existing markets and maintaining corporate locations.

The company has about 80 locations in more than a dozen U.S. states, with numerous openings planned, including in Hawaii. Most locations are in the brand’s home state of California, but shops are also located in or opening soon in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon and Texas. The company has agreements with franchisees for more than 500 locations.

International locations are also on the horizon. Pieology in September 2015 signed an agreement with Progressive Pies LLC that will bring the fast-casual pizza chain to Guam and Saipan. Plans are for at least three locations, with the first expected to open in early 2016 in Guam.

A Young Company

Pieology is a relatively new player on the fast-casual pizza restaurant field, as Carl Chang founded the chain in 2011. Chang is brother and coach of pro tennis player Michael Chang, who is an investor in the company. Michael Chang opened his second Pieology location in June 2015 in Rancho Santa Margarita, California.

Pizza, Your Way

Pieology specializes in made-to-order pizzas with crust made in-house with proprietary flour. Customers (or, again, pieologists) select from the shop’s eight sauces and then choose from more than 30 meats, cheeses, vegetables, herbs and spices. The pizzas are cooked in a stone oven in less than three minutes.

After they are baked, the pizzas can be enhanced with Flavor Blast sauces, such as pesto, barbecue and buffalo. Most of the custom pizzas on 11.5-inch crusts cost $8 or less.

Customers can order gluten-free crust and whole-wheat crust and in some locations can get vegan mozzarella cheese.

Vikings Player Joins Pieology

Minnesota Vikings offensive lineman Matt Kalil joined the Pieology franchise team in 2014, opening Minnesota locations in Mankato, St. Paul and Maple Grove from September through November, along with his father, Frank. They plan another 14 Pieology shops in the state.

Missouri Plan Hatched

Pieology entered Missouri in November 2015 with a shop in St. Charles. Franchisee Midwest Pie LLC expects to open six locations in the St. Louis area. Pieology CEO Carl Chang plans to open 15 to 25 shops in Missouri by the fall of 2016.

Technomic Honors Chain

In May 2015, Technomic named Pieology as the fastest-growing limited-service restaurant chain, based on the company having tripled its sales and unit growth in 2014. Technomic, who puts out its top chain restaurants report annually, is a consulting and research firm that serves the food industry.

Pieology CEO Gets Award of Excellence

CEO Carl Chang was honored with the Excellence in Entrepreneurship Award in April 2015 by the Orange County Business Journal. Chang was one of five honorees selected from nearly 150 nominees.

Pieology Brings Baker on as President

Bob Baker joined Pieology Pizzeria as president in June 2014, bringing more than 25 years of experience in the restaurant business. Baker was most recently president and chief financial officer of Cafe Rio Mexican Grill, headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. He has also held leadership roles at Yum Brands and KFC Corporation.

The company also hired Randy Carucci as vice president of real estate in November 2015. Carucci has more than 35 years of experience, having worked with brands such as Panera Bread and Cinnabon. In other hires, Pieology brought in Richard Pineda as vice president of supply chain and Hans Milberger as director of construction in April 2015 and added Stephanie Lambrecht as vice president of operations in November 2014.

Section II – Estimated Costs

  • Please click here for detailed estimates of Pieology franchise costs, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2015 FDD (updated).

Section III – Financial Performance Representations (Item 19, 2015 FDD) and Analysis



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