IBJNews

Noble Roman's gets rolling with take-and-bake franchises

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Selling freshly made pizzas without adding an oven to the equation has proved a hot concept for Indianapolis-based Noble Roman’s Inc.

Since October, franchisees have opened the pizza chain’s first seven stand-alone, take-and-bake locations—dubbed Noble Roman’s Take-n-Bake P’ZA. Nine more are in development or under construction, firm officials announced Tuesday.

“Take-and-bake continues to be one of the fastest-growing segments in the pizza industry,” said CEO Paul Mobley in prepared comments. “… We continue to grow our pipeline of franchise prospects for the stand-alone take-and-bake concept, and expect to have several others under development over the coming weeks.”

The firm’s take-and-bake concept is very similar to that of the industry-leading Papa Murphy’s chain. Pizzas in the Noble Roman’s Take-n-Bake P’ZA locations are made to order at room temperature, so customers can cook them at home.

IBJ reported in November that Noble Roman’s executives see great upside in the concept, and hope to offer take-and-bake franchising opportunities nationwide.

Six of the first seven Take-n-Bake P’ZA locations are in central Indiana, with the seventh in Decatur, Ill., according to the Noble Roman’s website. An eighth is coming soon to Plainfield. Eight more are expected to open within several months.

The selling point for franchisees is that Take-n-Bake P’ZA locations only require 900 square feet of space, with a minimal amount of equipment required compared with a quick-service restaurant. And without an oven and related cooling/exhaust systems, operating costs such as utilities and maintenance are lower.

Company executives told IBJ last year that it would charge a $15,000 franchise fee and collect 7 percent of net sales from its take-and-bake operators. The start-up cost was estimated at $60,000 to $100,000.

Noble Roman’s ability to keep costs down for take-and-bake franchisees will be key for success of the new brand, analysts said.

“I’ve placed my bet with Noble Roman’s to succeed,” said Ian Cassel, founder of Pennsylvania-based MicroCapClub, a membership organization made up of investors focused on low-priced stocks issued by small companies. “If they can keep [franchisees’] capital expenditures and operational expenditures as low as they say, it should be an opportunity for significant growth in this company, which I believe will be reflected in an increase in the stock price.”

Shares of publicly traded Noble Roman’s were up 9 cents on Tuesday in early trading, to $1.07. In May, Noble Roman’s reported profit of $418,000 for the first-quarter of 2013 on revenue of $1.89 million.

Noble Roman’s is not entirely new to the take-and-bake arena. In 2010, the company started brokering deals to sell uncooked refrigerated pizzas in grocery stores. On Tuesday, the company said that it had increased the number of grocery stores with license agreements to sell its refrigerated pizzas to about 1,625.

Take-and-bake is the latest permutation of pizza retailing adopted by Noble Roman's. It started with traditional pizzerias in 1972, and over the years has tried strategies such as franchising smaller shops in convenience stores and developing a sub-sandwich concept.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Loved the old tomato sauce
    Hard for NR to shake their image from the past decade of closed and dirty restaurants, shared quarters with Subways and gas stations, and now the grocery store take'n bake concept. (Take 'n bake franchises also don't have to charge/report sales tax, as the food is not "prepared" by cooking, but sold as staples/produce.) Give my the ORIGINAL deep dish Sicilian and old Bambino recipe!!!
  • I luv Noble Romans!
    I miss having them around. I hope one of their stores is in the general Meridian/86th Street area. I will make good use of it.
  • Masters of Re-invention
    Over the years, this company has reinvented itself almost as many times as Madonna. For several years it was a full-serve pizza restaurant with a good salad bar, then a mini-store in gas stations/co-branded stores/small locations, and now this Take-n-Bake concept. Since they're headquartered in Indy, I do hope they eventually hit on something that works. In the meantime, their stock is about the same price it was 7 years ago, so at least they're not losing ground corporately. Been some lawsuits where their franchisees can't say the same, unfortunately, but hopefully everyone will fare better under this new concept. Need some good promotions, though, as I haven't even heard of it in the glutted pizza market or ever seen them in the grocery store (are they available locally?). Love their bread sticks, so best of luck, Noble Romans!

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Angela IS the best RD

  2. We are a nation of speed. All of our younger lives are filled with deadlines, quotas and bottom lines. We start to ease out of the pressured rat-race when we finally see "retirement." The most enjoyable travel on the planet is passenger rail service. Indy to Chicago does not beat Megabus or Southwest Airlines in speed. Passenger rail however has the best seating, mammoth legroon, seat backs that recline to more than 45 degrees and employers that really want you to return as a customer. Indiana municipalities need to maintain subsidies to support this transportation mode. Losing it is loss for all of us.

  3. Good day! I just want to testify how i got my loan from Mr. Eric Lefkofsky after i applied several times from various loan lenders who claimed to also testify right in this forum,i thought the testimonies where real and i applied but they never gave me loan. I was in need of an urgent loan to start a business and i applied from various loan lenders who promised to help but they never gave me the loan. Until a friend of mine introduce me to this popular Mr. Eric Lefkofsky who promised to help me and indeed he did as he promised without any form of delay. I never thought there are still reliable loan lenders until i met Mr. Eric lefkofsky who indeed helped me with the loan and changed my belief. I promised to share this testimony after I got my loan. I don't know if you are in any way in need of a genuine and urgent loan,free feel to contact Mr. Eric Lefkofsky via their email{grouponfunding@hotmail.com}

  4. Its a THUG issue. Bleecker Street and NYX are thug bars. They attract thugs of all races. Places that attract thugs need to be kicked out of Broad Ripple. Ain't nobody got time for that!

  5. Hello everyone, My name is Marian Gareth, I am from the Texas, United State, am here to testify of how i got my loan from Mr Andre Frank {frankloancompany@yahoo.com} after i applied Two times from various loan lenders who claimed to be lenders right in this forum,i thought their lending where real and i applied but they never gave me loan. I was in need of an urgent loan to start a business and i applied from various loan lenders who promised to help but they never gave me the loan.Until a friend of mine introduce me to Mr Andre Frank the C.E.O of Andre Frank Loan Company who promised to help me with a loan of my desire and he really did as he promised without any form of delay, I never thought there are still reliable loan lenders until i met Mr Andre Frank, who really help me with my loan and changed my lief for better. I don't know if you are in need of an urgent loan, free feel to contact Mr Andre Frank on his email{ Frankloancompany@yahoo.com} for help

ADVERTISEMENT