Franco Manca’s kitchens have baked two million pizzas in the past six months as new menu and pricing initiatives continue to engage customers in an otherwise tough casual dining space, it was revealed today.
Owners Fulham Shore confirmed the two million pizza milestone had been reached in the six-month period to 23 September, with the chain’s estate up to 58 branches following openings in Bath and Cambridge. Both sites continue to be busy since opening their doors, the company said.
Fulham Shore chairman David Page said the group performed well in the first half of the year courtesy of a number of factors.
“Amongst these were new menu initiatives, including vegan and gluten free options within both businesses; investment in digital channels; and our policy of keeping menu prices at ‘everyday value-for-money’ levels. Since we acquired the Franco Manca and The Real Greek businesses, we have concentrated on their stand out characteristics: food provenance and menu pricing.
“We feel it is essential to source the best produce for our chefs and pizzaioli to work with. These ingredients are fresh and not frozen, local where possible, and with lines of supply controlled by us. The last of these, as we cut out middlemen and agents, together with our increased volume, leads to lower menu prices for our customers. This approach still holds true. It has helped our restaurants thrive and has led, we believe, to high levels of customer loyalty and the increased customer numbers throughout the half year.”
Mr Page also paid tribute to the company’s property team, which he praised for continuing to excel in finding interesting and sometimes quirky locations for the brand’s expansion.
“Franco Manca in Bath is situated in a converted railway arch under Bath Spa railway station, for example, whilst Cambridge is in a listed (and leaning) ex jewellery shop on the Market Square,” he said.
Fulham Shore’s revenues grew 20% to £33m and headline EBITDA rose 1% to £4.6m.