Marco's Pizza

SOUTH DAKOTA

Josh Holdinghausen has added five new locations since opening his first restaurant three years ago and employs more than 150 people.
Source: Marco's Pizza
Josh Holdinghausen has added five new locations since opening his first restaurant three years ago and employs more than 150 people.
Description: Pizza for takeout and delivery
Owner: Josh Holdinghausen
Years in business: 3
No. of franchises owned: 6
Start-up costs: $150,592 to $546,592, depending on the size of the restaurant; $85,000
Franchisor fees: Royalties 5.5% of sales; marketing 6.5% of sales
2015 revenue, 2016 projection: $6 million; $9 million
2016 projected annual growth rate: 50%

It was "love at first bite," said Josh Holdinghausen when he tried a slice of Marco's Pizza. That experience, he said, convinced him that Marco's was the pizza franchise he wanted to partner with, and in 2013 he bought his first one, in Rapid City, South Dakota. "The quality of the Marco's product and customer service is unrivaled by the other big hitters in the pizza segment," said Holdinghausen, who's worked in the restaurant industry since he was a teenager.

With more than 650 restaurants open in 35 states, Marco's Pizza has carved out a leading spot in the franchised pizza world by offering handmade pies that use fresh, not frozen, cheeses and dough made daily in the stores. The parent company claims it is on track to have 1,000 restaurants open by the end of 2017.

Additional resources for franchisees

It's always been Holdinghausen's dream to have his own restaurant, and with Marco's he's been able to open six locations throughout South Dakota using a proven concept and system, he added. "This is a great franchisor that is constantly improving its operating and inventory systems to grow sales and become a bigger slice of the pizza industry," he said.

By adding five new locations since opening his first restaurant three years ago, Holdinghausen is growing revenues at a rapid clip and now employs more than 150 people. Like many in the restaurant industry, he views the rising cost of employee labor and benefits as an ongoing challenge, as well as recruiting staff that share his vision of the business.

The most important piece of advice he can give other would-be franchisees is to buy into something "you believe in, something you are proud to put your name behind, and let everyone know you are part of it." Holdinghausen says he's never without his Marco's gear, whether he's heading to the gym, grocery store or even on vacation. "I've been in business three years, and I'm still not tired of eating there, because I honestly love the food we offer," he said.


"I’ve been in business three years and I’m still not tired of eating there, because I honestly love the food we offer." -Josh Holdinghausen

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