March 10, 2021 | RestaurantNews.com | Original Article
Ohio-based pizza concept signs more development agreements across The Sunshine State
Columbus, OH (RestaurantNews.com) Donatos Pizza is celebrating successful openings throughout 2020 across Florida. The pizza chain’s latest push to expand in the state includes Southwest Florida, where the brand is announcing a deal that will bring three locations to the Estero, Bonita Springs and Naples areas.
The fast-casual pizza chain famous for its Edge to Edge® toppings opened 5 locations in Sarasota, Jacksonville Beach and Winter Park. Donatos also signed multi store development agreements for Jacksonville, Orlando, the greater Tampa/St. Pete market, greater Sarasota and Bonita Springs to Marco Island with multiple franchise groups.
“We are receiving inquiries from people across the state of Florida who are seeing our brand’s aggressive growth strategy. Our success in the state confirms our commitment to focus on Florida and find the best partners with whom to share our success said Jeff Baldwin, Vice President of Development & Franchising for Donatos. “We know Floridians are searching for new pizza and while we have been in business for 58 years there is no pizza in Florida like Donatos ‘Edge to Edge’ toppings pizza”.
Donatos was founded in 1963 when Ohio State sophomore Jim Grote bought a small pizza shop in Columbus, Ohio from a young seminarian for $1,300. The company was classified “Best in Class” and acquired by McDonald’s Corporation in 1999, at a time when the fast-food giant was extending its reach beyond burgers. A few years later when McDonald’s was looking to get out of the pizza business, Grote and his daughter, Jane Abell, bought back the company in 2003.
Donatos Pizza and Red Robin partnered two years ago to bring a scaled-down Donatos pizza menu alongside Red Robin’s signature burgers in a handful of Red Robin restaurants. The two franchises have expanded plans, and the partnership franchise expansion efforts are continuing to take off. Today, that partnership includes 79 Red Robin locations with plans to have Donatos pizza served in over 200 locations by the end of 2021.
About Donatos Pizza
Donatos features the Edge-to-Edge® pizza, created by Jim Grote who founded Donatos Pizza in 1963. Donatos and its franchise partners operate 168 traditional restaurants in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Virginia, South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Florida. Donatos’ products are also proudly served in 93 non-traditional locations (79 locations with Red Robin and 14 sports and entertainment venues). For more information about Donatos Pizza, visit donatos.com, like on Facebook or follow on Twitter and Instagram.