|Private, with publicly traded royalty income fund|
|Traded as||TSX: PZA|
|Industry||Fast food restaurants|
|Headquarters||500 Kipling Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Products||Pizza, Pasta, Wings, other fast food|
|Slogan||Hot & Fresh|
Pizza Pizza Limited is a franchised Canadian pizza fast-food restaurant, with its headquarters in Etobicoke, Toronto. Its restaurants are mainly located in the province of Ontario. Other locations operate in Quebec, Nova Scotia, and in western Canada. Franchises in western Canada are mostly run through Alberta-based subsidiary Pizza 73, and in non-traditional locations such as university campuses and movie theatres throughout Canada. It has over 500 locations, including over 150 non-traditional locations.
The chain was founded by Michael Overs, who opened the first location on December 31, 1967, at the corner of Wellesley and Parliament Streets in Toronto. It was owned by him until his death in 2010. It expanded throughout the Toronto area in the 1970s, and throughout the rest of Ontario throughout the 1980s and 1990s.
The chain opened its first locations in Quebec in the mid 1980s, but withdrew after a few years. It returned to the province, in Gatineau, in March 2007. Locations were opened in the Montreal area in late 2007 in the boroughs of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce and Pierrefonds-Roxboro.
In 2012, Pizza Pizza accounted for 21% of the market in Quebec by total revenue, while competitors Domino's and Pizza Hut held 30% and 23% respectively. Double Pizza, which held 26% of the market in 2006 before Pizza Pizza entered the market, had been reduced to 15%.
Pizza Pizza began to expand significantly outside Ontario during the 2000s. In its 2005 initial public offering filings, the chain announced it would consider expansion in western Canada, potentially including purchasing existing local chains. This led to a June 2007 agreement to purchase Alberta-based Pizza 73. As well, in October 2006, the company announced it would expand in the Quebec market, beginning with sponsorship of the Montreal Canadiens. The chain expanded to the British Columbia Lower Mainland in 2009 (Pizza 73 already had a location in Prince George in the B.C. Interior), and soon thereafter added locations in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Pizza Pizza opened its first store in Halifax, Nova Scotia in June 2010.
In 2005, the Pizza Pizza Royalty Income Fund (TSX: PZA.UN), an open-ended trust, completed its initial public offering. Pizza Pizza Limited, which remains privately held by Overs' son-in-law Paul Goddard, pays the fund 6% of the sales of its restaurants in Canada.
Major southern Ontario competitors include Pizza Hut, Domino's Pizza, Little Caesars, Gino's Pizza, 241 Pizza, Double Double Pizza, and Pizza Nova. Two other major Canadian chains, Greco and Panago, which have a presence similar to Pizza Pizza in the Atlantic and Western Canada respectively, have entered the Ontario market. In Montreal, Quebec, its competitors are Mikes and Double Pizza.
The company's founder, Michael Overs, died on March 31, 2010. His son-in-law, Paul Goddard, was appointed CEO.
Pizza Pizza uses the self-explanatory slogans "Hot & Fresh" and "Ontario's #1 Pizza!" but is best known for the chain's phone number, XXX–1111. A distinctive jingle "nine six seven, eleven eleven, call Pizza Pizza, hey hey hey" played extensively on Toronto commercial radio in the 1970s. The company claims that its early adoption of the centralized single-number ordering system, and its subsequent use and heavy promotion of this rhyming phone number, helped the chain to expand through Ontario.
A central local number is used for all locations until it becomes a long distance call. In other cities, local numbers are requested with the "11-11" suffix to match the standard jingle in the chain's radio advertisements (Belleville, for instance, is +1-613-967-1111). Pizza Pizza has registered "967–1111" and variants as trademarks.
The strategy of deploying one central, memorable and heavily-advertised local number for all locations in a city's local calling area has now been adopted by some of Pizza Pizza's largest competitors.
- use a pizza delivery bag
- develop the centralized, computerized call centre
- place advertising on the spines of telephone directories
- advertise using Post-It notes on newspapers, and via coupons on parking receipts
- use virtual advertising, as one of several such advertisers during Global's coverage of Super Bowl XXXVI
- put pineapple on a pizza
In popular culture
- In Scott Pilgrim v. the World the restaurant appears.
- It has secured product placement on the television series Degrassi: The Next Generation.
- Musicians Moxy Früvous mention it in their song "King of Spain".
- A chapter of Michael Moore's book Downsize This! advises illegal immigrants who want to sneak into Canada at Niagara Falls to memorize Pizza Pizza's number to appear Canadian. Moore cites Pizza Pizza as Canada's "national pizza chain" when at the time of publishing they did not have any locations outside of eastern Canada.
"Pizza! Pizza!" is also recognized, primarily in the United States, as the slogan for another pizza franchise, Little Caesars. The companies are not affiliated, and compete in many areas of Canada. Little Caesars has been prohibited from using it as a slogan in Canada, as part of Pizza Pizza's court defence of the trademark and the great possibility of confusion between the two firms. Pizza Pizza sold rights to the use of its "Pizza Pizza" radio jingle and slogan to Little Caesars in 1979.
A popular promotion at NHL games resulted in the Ottawa Senators line of Dany Heatley, Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson (before Heatley's departure in September 2009, to play for the San Jose Sharks) being called the "Pizza Line" as they often contributed to scoring the five goals necessary in a Senators win to redeem ticket stubs at a Pizza Pizza for a free slice. Subsequently, the promotion was raised to six goals in a game.
Pizza Pizza University
- "“FIAT” ONLINE CONTEST RULES & REGULATIONS." Pizza Pizza. Retrieved on December 5, 2012. "Pizza Pizza, 500 Kipling Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M8Z 5E5"
- It's game on for Pizza Pizza expansion in Quebec market, Pizza Pizza press release, October 11, 2006
- Pizza Pizza press release, January 28, 2009
- "967–1111" is registered in Canada under registration number TMA428709.
- Pizza Pizza. Pizzapizza.ca. Retrieved on 2012-02-09.
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