Why has Dominos Pizza pulled out of Italy?

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The front page of the Italian newspaper Il Messaggero read: “Italians don’t like pineapple pizza”

The chain’s remaining 29 restaurants closed their doors, seven years after the franchise opened them with the help of ePizza in 2015.

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Back then, Domino’s had vowed to open 880 stores in the home of pizza.

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Locals avoided the chain as their use of American-style toppings was not well received, and Italian daily Il Messaggero stated “Italians don’t like pineapple pizza”.

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Here’s everything you need to know about why Domino’s Pizza closed in Italy.

Domino’s has closed its last 29 stores in Italy (Image: AFP via Getty Images)

When did Domino’s Pizza open in Italy?

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The American fast-food franchise opened its first Italian store in 2015 with a goal of opening 880 more.

At the launch, the chain vowed to use local produce and avoid mass-produced ingredients.

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Domino said so CNBC: “We source all our products from Italian manufacturers. We created our own recipe, based on the original pizza recipe, with Italian products such as 100% tomato sauce and mozzarella.”

Why did Domino’s Pizza pull out of Italy?

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The American fast food chain opened 33 restaurants in Italy in 2015.

However, by 2021, pizza sales were down almost 38%.

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A report on the sales results states: “We attribute the problem to i) significantly increased competition in the food delivery market, with both organized chains and mom and pop restaurants delivering groceries to survive, and ii) restaurants that are reopening post-pandemic consumers are on the go with revenge spending,” the report said.

The franchise also struggled to get customers to download and order through its app, with more than half of its pizza orders being placed in person or over the phone.

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Domino’s had already begun reducing production and halting online deliveries from its website from July 29.

Corresponding Bloombergthe chain has gone bankrupt in Italy, with a tribunal in Milan granting ePizza protection from creditors until July 1.

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Audit reports from late 2020 revealed that the chain was 10.6 million euros worth of debt at the time.

The American fast food chain didn’t go down well in the home of pizza (Image: Getty Images for NYCWFF)

How was the reaction?

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There was a quick reaction to the news on social media, with people poking fun at the chain and even trying to launch their product in Italy in the first place.

One Twitter user wrote: “If you ever feel like you’re being a little outrageously cocky, just remember Domino thought they could justify opening 880 stores in Italy.”

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While another wrote: “Amusing to think Dominos thought they could conquer Italy. Have they actually compared their downright average but extortionate pizzas to an authentic Napoletana? Insanity”

Another tweet explained, “Trying to open Domino’s Pizza in Italy is like trying to sell snow at the North Pole.”

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The news was also reported in the Italian media, with a headline from the Italian newspaper Il Messaggero He explained: “Italians don’t like pineapple pizza: Domino’s is closing all pizzerias in the country.”

The article poked fun at the American pizzas on offer, such as “Pepperoni Passion” and “Hawaiana,” noting that “these products would turn up the nose of traditional pizza lovers.”

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