The new partnership will support 540 jobs in the 27 existing Huts involved and will support the ambitious growth of Pizza Hut Delivery locations across the UK. The agreement will provide considerable investment into dozens of communities through renovation of existing Huts, as well as opening several new Huts in the Midlands, Yorkshire and North West in the year ahead.
Pizza Hut operates over 700 Huts across the UK – including approximately 350 Pizza Hut Delivery locations. This new partnership is part of Pizza Hut Delivery’s significant growth plans, following an announcement in November last year to open 125 new locations over a three-year period – creating around 2,000 additional jobs.
While the hospitality industry has been affected by Covid-19, Pizza Hut Delivery is continuing to grow while operating safely. UK customers looking for comfort from classic foods and easy delivery, as well as a network of agile franchisees led to double digit year on year sales growth in the second half of 2020. Pizza Hut also continues to respond to and delight customers with new pizzas, such as lower calorie flatbreads and a popcorn chicken collaboration with KFC, while all the time expanding into new communities.
As Pizza Hut Delivery’s newest franchise partner, Starboard Dining will operate delivery stores in the Midlands, Yorkshire and the North West using the Pizza Hut brand and menu that customers know and love. Franchising allows Pizza Hut to grow globally and maintain the flexibility and regional touch of an independent local business.
Starboard is one of the UK’s leading independent hotel owners, developers and operators of hotels, partnered with world-leading brands including Hilton, IHG, Accor, Wyndham and Best Western. Starboard owns and operates 21 hotels, with over 2,000 bedrooms throughout the country. Starboard first ventured into the world of takeaway in 2017 to utilise its franchising experience and is looking forward to working with Pizza Hut.
Specialist business property adviser Christie & Co was appointed by Pizza Hut to find the right franchisee for this portfolio of Pizza Hut stores and successfully navigated the new partnership with Starboard.
Neil Manhas, General Manager UK at Pizza Hut Delivery, comments, “Pizza Hut Delivery is delighted to welcome a new franchise partner, Starboard, into our network in the Midlands Yorkshire and the North West. We’re excited to see what new growth 2021 has in store for us, including increasing our footprint through strategic franchising deals such as this. Starboard and our other franchisees play a key role in helping us to deliver customer favourites safely, provide essential jobs and support our communities throughout the pandemic, including our delivery of over 250,000 free meals for the NHS.”
Frazer Callingham, Managing Director at Starboard Dining says, “We’re thrilled to be joining Pizza Hut in this new partnership. This 27-store portfolio offers an amazing opportunity to continue our expansion into the dining and hospitality space, using our extensive experience in both sectors to continue growing the Pizza Hut Delivery franchise, and to be able to make a positive impact in the Midlands, Yorkshire and the North West by contributing to life on the high street and creating jobs in our communities.
He continues, “The addition of this successful delivery chain to the Starboard portfolio will be welcomed by our hotel teams and by our other Starboard Dining business Wok To Walk. It is a natural fit as Starboard looks to further broaden its presence in the hospitality sector.”
Simon Chaplin, Senior Director of Corporate Pubs & Restaurants at Christie & Co, who handled the sale, says, “This was an ambitious sale and a new route for Pizza Hut to engage with communities in the North West and Midlands. Finding new franchise partners in a pandemic is no easy task, but the strong performance and ever-improving sales figures coming from the estate made this an attractive business move for Starboard and Pizza Hut alike. We are delighted to have worked with Pizza Hut on this sale and look forward to supporting on many more successful franchising partnerships in the future.”
About Pizza Hut in the UK
Pizza Hut operates over 700 takeaway and restaurant Huts in the UK and Northern Ireland, employing over 14,000 people. In the UK, Pizza Hut Delivery combines 400 company run Delivery and Express stores and a strong franchise network, with over 60 franchise partners. Pizza Hut Delivery in the UK is part of Pizza Hut Europe and is run by General Manager, Neil Manhas. Pizza Hut is part of Yum!, a Fortune 1000 company owning a multitude of international fast-food outlets, namely Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, The Habit Burger Grill and KFC.
About Christie & Co
Christie & Co is the leading specialist property advisor for buying and selling businesses, providing agency, valuation and consultancy services and has decades of experience and unrivalled insight across a range of sectors including hotels, pubs, restaurants, childcare, healthcare, convenience retail, leisure and medical. With a network of regional, national and international offices, the company employs the largest number of sector specialists in the UK and more hotel specialists in Europe than anyone else.
Following significant increased demand for Pizza Hut Delivery, Christie & Co is assisting Pizza Hut in acquiring new sites by converting existing operators to franchisees of one of Britain’s favourite household brands. The project is named ‘Project Vespa’.
Starboard Dining was launched in 2017 as part of the Starboard portfolio, opening two Wok To Walk restaurants under franchise in Birmingham and Reading.
Starboard Hotels is an award-winning owner, operator and developer of franchised hotels under the world’
s leading brands, including Hampton by Hilton, Holiday Inn Express (IHG), Days Inn (Wyndham), Best Western, and ibis/Accor Hotels, in addition to own brand properties Windermere Manor and The Cliffden Hotel in Devon. With 21 hotels and over 2,000 bedrooms, Starboard is a specialist in the UK select and full-service hotel sector.
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