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Author Topic: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!  (Read 2908 times)

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Offline hotsawce

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #40 on: September 26, 2017, 12:47:09 AM »
MiDici makes money on franchising. I have a really difficult time believing, at their price point and the amount of staff they carry, that it's a really profitable operation. If you're MiDici corporate and taking a fee and cut of the revenues it's a great model. But I am seriously skeptic about most fast casual operations.

Also, definitely not "real" neapolitan pizza.

This place: http://www.mymidici.com/menu/pizza/

Recently opened in my area.  REAL Neapolitan pizza, fresh basil and oregano, 90 second bake times in a fast-casual setting.  Amazing pizza for about 10 bucks a piece.

Their ovens: http://www.mymidici.com/functional-art/our-ovens/

If you can replicate this place, you will be very successful.  I would sure hate to compete against them.

Offline hotsawce

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #41 on: September 26, 2017, 12:59:55 AM »
if you don't have strong systems in place that's a very real number. It's even easier to dip into the red.

Restaurants can be very profitable but you really need to come from a restaurant background if you want to run one. There are so many things the untrained eye might not catch. You definitely need to hit certain benchmarks..

For example, are you ready to cost out the basil per pizza to the gram? Your sauce? what about the yields on your produce? Don't over-pour on alcohol. What about that employee who's taking OT because you had a no call-no show earlier in the week? Did your AC go and needs a repair? Pipe burst or basement flooded? Is your staff skilled enough to do the volume needed in that oven? If you're running gas, do you know how to properly care for and maintain that equipment?

Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. So be prepared for it. I promise, you will end up washing dishes, making pizzas, and scrubbing down at the end of the night. There are going to be 7 day work weeks. 100+ hours. If you're going to open up a spot you have to realize it's going to be the most difficult business you've ever run. Restaurants are notoriously difficult for a reason. The industry is full of chefs and cooks with emotional problems, substance abuse issues, etc. It's not easy. Be prepared for literal "hell." You will be burnt out and spent. But if you get through it, it's rewarding.

Wife and I have a similar concept in mind on a 1/4 scale.

We are still searching for a location and not settling for just anything.

Important note:
I was reading on google where an individual stated that he makes 7 cents on the dollar profit with his pizza shop. This isn't even with him paying a salary to himself. This just doesn't seem right. After all you have to make a living somewhat.

Correct me if I'm wrong. But if this is the case then I need to hang it up before we get far too advanced on the financial side of investing.

I find it hard to believe that if you make let's say $100.00 you profit $7.00. Just seems crazy!

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #42 on: September 26, 2017, 09:46:22 AM »
Lou,

Pie Five, which is also a franchised fast casual pizza chain (with some company-owned stores), has been closing stores (eighteen of them)  because of sales problems, and who knows what else?

http://www.nrn.com/fast-casual/pie-five-closes-18-locations.

Peter

Offline StateofMind

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #43 on: September 26, 2017, 10:41:23 AM »
I've seen quite a few fast casual chain stores that do a "wood fired" pizza close in my area. My take on it has been that the quality just wasn't there and demand dropped. I've seen a couple of the locations reopened by operators with deck ovens that can create more consistent products at higher volumes.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #44 on: September 26, 2017, 10:54:35 AM »
Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. So be prepared for it.

The importance of this can't be overstated - not just in the restaurant business but in any business. It's particularly relevant in the restaurant business because many tend to be undercapitalized which dramatically reduces the acceptable margin of error. Humans love bell curves, and we tend to put a bell curve on everything without checking to see if it fits. The natural human assumption is to believe that in most situations there is an expected outcome and the distribution of outcomes better than expected is about the same as the distribution of worse than expected outcomes. In reality, there are often very few outcomes that are better than expected while the possible set of worse outcomes tends to be huge. What you end up with is a whole lot of risk that you don't even acknowledge exists let alone plan for. What is ironic is that we continue to do it while simultaneously acknowledging it happening when we say things like "thing have to go our way someday." The simple fact is that they don't because that scenario may not exist.  These is even a name for the phenomena, and everyone has heard of it: Murphy's Law.
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Offline hellskitchen

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #45 on: September 26, 2017, 11:07:49 AM »
Is there anything positive about the pizza business? Anyone here love doing what they do?

I'm aware of what employees can do as I have owned a business for 27 years. We are not looking to become the next chain or make a million in revenue each year. We just want to have fun and pay the bills. I'm retired and this is something my wife and I have been discussing for 10 years.

I'm not financing a single piece of equipment and will own everything our-right with the exception of the lease which will be under $2,500 a month.

I have certainly appreciated everyones feedback and comments...


Offline waltertore

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #46 on: September 26, 2017, 11:15:33 AM »
Is there anything positive about the pizza business? Anyone here love doing what they do?


Me
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline StateofMind

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #47 on: September 26, 2017, 11:38:00 AM »
I'm also doing what I love. I recently sold a restaurant I opened and owned to one of my partners. My family and I are currently building our dream restaurant. It's a lot of stress, a lot of pressure, and a TON of money beyond what we originally had originally thought. But I am happy and motivated.

Offline jkb

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #48 on: September 26, 2017, 12:32:04 PM »
if you don't have strong systems in place that's a very real number. It's even easier to dip into the red.

Restaurants can be very profitable but you really need to come from a restaurant background if you want to run one. There are so many things the untrained eye might not catch. You definitely need to hit certain benchmarks..

For example, are you ready to cost out the basil per pizza to the gram? Your sauce? what about the yields on your produce? Don't over-pour on alcohol. What about that employee who's taking OT because you had a no call-no show earlier in the week? Did your AC go and needs a repair? Pipe burst or basement flooded? Is your staff skilled enough to do the volume needed in that oven? If you're running gas, do you know how to properly care for and maintain that equipment?

Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. So be prepared for it. I promise, you will end up washing dishes, making pizzas, and scrubbing down at the end of the night. There are going to be 7 day work weeks. 100+ hours. If you're going to open up a spot you have to realize it's going to be the most difficult business you've ever run. Restaurants are notoriously difficult for a reason. The industry is full of chefs and cooks with emotional problems, substance abuse issues, etc. It's not easy. Be prepared for literal "hell." You will be burnt out and spent. But if you get through it, it's rewarding.

Those are all stupid obvious what ifs.  I can't imagine anyone putting a chunk of their money on the line wouldn't consider them.

Offline hotsawce

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #49 on: September 26, 2017, 02:47:31 PM »
They aren't stupid "what ifs." And "imagine it," because it happens all the time.

Those are all stupid obvious what ifs.  I can't imagine anyone putting a chunk of their money on the line wouldn't consider them.

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Offline hotsawce

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #50 on: September 26, 2017, 02:59:14 PM »
Respectfully, this is where your mindset is off. Restaurants are not "have fun and pay the bills" ventures. That is absolutely not the attitude you want to take into this thing, whether you plan on being the next national chain or not. This isn't a hobby; its WORK. Has anyone ever opened a hedge fund just to "have fun and pay the bills?" Or a law firm to shoot %$# and pay a few bills?

Most people severely underestimate the time, money, and tears that go into running a restaurant. Most of the time, you don't have a HR department. Or an ordering department. Or a hiring manager. I've been chef, manager, dishwasher, cook, and a host of other jobs all at once.

I love running restaurants. But I'm not going to sit here and BS you - I haven't had a proper vacation in a WHILE. I've worked 7 days. Anywhere from 50 (rare) to 90 hours (very common) weeks. On your feet, sweating and moving most of that time. And if I'm not on site, I'm looped in to what's going on constantly. I'd be lying if I told you there haven't been shifts where I've lost sleep that night. Or gotten no sleep at all.

If you think you're ready for that, go for it. All I'm saying, is be ready for it.

Is there anything positive about the pizza business? Anyone here love doing what they do?

I'm aware of what employees can do as I have owned a business for 27 years. We are not looking to become the next chain or make a million in revenue each year. We just want to have fun and pay the bills. I'm retired and this is something my wife and I have been discussing for 10 years.

I'm not financing a single piece of equipment and will own everything our-right with the exception of the lease which will be under $2,500 a month.

I have certainly appreciated everyones feedback and comments...

Offline jkb

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #51 on: September 26, 2017, 03:57:57 PM »
They aren't stupid "what ifs." And "imagine it," because it happens all the time.

I said stupid obvious and they are.

Offline waltertore

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #52 on: September 26, 2017, 04:28:56 PM »
simple rules for success:

Know everything about :

every aspect of making great pizza
equipment
bookkeeping
ordering products


Know this stuff just a good:

choose a great location
stay small
be onsite at all open hours
hire non food service people(high school/college honor students) and train them in prep, topping, cleanup,
get a commercial realtor if you are not versed in commercial leases
rent a shop that is restaurant ready and up to code - ideally former pizzeria
come out of the gate top shelf

we run a small shop and work hard but it is a lot easier than teaching in the public schools :)  I could never do this where I grew up back in Metro NYC.  The rents and costs of everything are way to high to pull off the mom/pop concept anymore.  That is sad because that is where the great pies were made.  Open in a small market/up and coming food hip city, keep it super simple with minimum topping choices, pie sizes/types and no side stuff like pasta/sandwiches, and you can make a great living working 50-60 hours a week and not kill yourself.  Luckily NY pizza quality is at an all time low so the competition just isn't there like it use to be. Family run places in NYC/metro NJ have closed or have to hire unskilled pizza/dough makers because the family doesn't want to work and or they have to stay open insane hours to make a living.  Reno is a hidden gem as it is growing faster than all heck but still lacks decent pizza and rents are cheap. 
« Last Edit: September 26, 2017, 06:06:26 PM by waltertore »
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline PizzaGarage

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #53 on: September 27, 2017, 04:37:17 PM »
Lou,

Pie Five, which is also a franchised fast casual pizza chain (with some company-owned stores), has been closing stores (eighteen of them)  because of sales problems, and who knows what else?

http://www.nrn.com/fast-casual/pie-five-closes-18-locations.

Peter

Just went out of business in my town 2 months ago.  Right across the street was another cheap fast "wood fire" place "Mod Pizza", that went out too last month.  The next in line is "Blaze" pizza, in a town next to me, that's gone too.  Same concept all 3 went out of business in less than 1 year.  The only chain left is Dominos.  All the rest of the 20 some odd places are independents. 

Those pizza's are total garbage, but the franchise made big money then it too will close sooner or later.  But, people got rich off the backs of pizza shop owners with no experience.

Offline kkgator

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #54 on: October 03, 2017, 10:29:49 AM »
I average 30-40 pies (10"-12") an hour in my forno bravo oven.  It is the largest hearth diameter at 48".  If I were to open a storefront, I would probably go for a gas deck oven stacked and have been looking at the marsal ovens that the Dough Doctor has recommended for a few reasons:
1.  Output would be increased w/deck ovens
2.  Probably have to deal w/less ventilation concerns/building codes/halo systems w/deck oven versus a wood fired oven & I can still bake other items in the oven in addition to pizza (bread, sandwiches, meats, etc)

In my previous life I was an operations engineer.  Who is my target audience?  How do I make that pizza?  Which oven is best suited towards making that style?  What is my output?  What are my limitations?  Food flowchart.

I know a ton of people here making great pies in their home ovens at 550F and I was one of them.  I fell in love w/Neapolitan style, but more so wood fired ovens. 

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Offline jvp123

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Re: Looking to open pizzeria - Advice needed!
« Reply #55 on: October 03, 2017, 11:49:07 AM »
simple rules for success:

Know everything about :

every aspect of making great pizza
equipment
bookkeeping
ordering products


Know this stuff just a good:

choose a great location
stay small
be onsite at all open hours
hire non food service people(high school/college honor students) and train them in prep, topping, cleanup,
get a commercial realtor if you are not versed in commercial leases
rent a shop that is restaurant ready and up to code - ideally former pizzeria
come out of the gate top shelf

we run a small shop and work hard but it is a lot easier than teaching in the public schools :)  I could never do this where I grew up back in Metro NYC.  The rents and costs of everything are way to high to pull off the mom/pop concept anymore.  That is sad because that is where the great pies were made.  Open in a small market/up and coming food hip city, keep it super simple with minimum topping choices, pie sizes/types and no side stuff like pasta/sandwiches, and you can make a great living working 50-60 hours a week and not kill yourself.  Luckily NY pizza quality is at an all time low so the competition just isn't there like it use to be. Family run places in NYC/metro NJ have closed or have to hire unskilled pizza/dough makers because the family doesn't want to work and or they have to stay open insane hours to make a living.  Reno is a hidden gem as it is growing faster than all heck but still lacks decent pizza and rents are cheap.

Great post. Thanks Walter.  :)
Jeff

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