• After some franchising success in other countries, California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) is seeking franchise partners to develop domestic markets.
  • CPK has bounced back after a difficult 2020, which saw the company file for and emerge from Chapter 11 reorganization.

The Pizza Power Report 2020: Get ready for the robots!

California Pizza Kitchen (CPK), headquartered in Costa Mesa, California, today announced the launch of its first-ever domestic franchise program after developing new partnerships in Hong Kong and Canada.

“For the first time in our 35-year history, we’re eager to engage new domestic franchisee partners that share a passion for creating memorable dining experiences and expand our reach to bring CPK to even more diners nationwide,” Giorgio Minardi, CPK’s executive vice president of global development and franchise operations, said in a press release.

“In addition to our aggressive franchise growth overseas, we look forward to bringing on new partners here in the states who believe in our imaginative, California-forward menu and unmatched hospitality,” added Minardi, who joined CPK in 2019 after holding leadership roles at Telepizza, Burger King, McDonald’s North Asia and other leading brands.

CPK has bounced back from a challenging 2020, when the company filed for Chapter 11 reorganization in July and emerged from bankruptcy in October. In September 2020, the company opened new franchise locations in Manila, The Philippines, and Daegu, South Korea, as well as in Salt Lake City. CPK currently has nearly 200 locations in the U.S. and around the world.

In addition to its domestic expansion, CPK said it plans to sign franchisee partners in new global markets, including Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Honduras, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Singapore, The Caribbean and more. The four footprint prototypes currently used in international markets will be available in the U.S., the company said.

“California Pizza Kitchen is a known leader in the global restaurant industry when it comes to innovative cuisine and friendly hospitality,” said Jim Hyatt, CPK’s president and CEO. “With Giorgio at the helm of our extensive franchise expansion, we look forward to expanding our national and global footprint in 2022 and beyond.”

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