Tuesday, Jul 07, 2015

Pizza-in-a-Cone Franchise Grows U.S. Footprint with New Openings, Multi-Unit Deals

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Pizza-in-a-Cone Franchise Grows U.S. Footprint with New Openings, Multi-Unit Deals
“The Original” Kono Pizza Gains National Momentum with New Kiosk & Mobile Cart Models

EDISON, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--After decades of devouring countless slices of triangle or square-cut pizza, Americans across the nation are experiencing a progressive new way to enjoy their favorite Italian dish – the healthier and portable pizza cone.

“The Original” Kono Pizza, based off popularity of the European pizza-in-a-cone concept, was first established in Edison, N.J. in 2013 by seasoned entrepreneurs David Ragosa and Carlo Ruggiero. Starting as a traditional brick and mortar business, the franchise has since grown to include three new prototype models – a kiosk, mobile cart and in-line store – giving potential franchisees the added flexibility to enter a variety of high-traffic areas.

Recent momentum includes:
• An announcement in May of a multi-unit deal to bring five “The Original” Kono Pizza mobile carts to Philadelphia and South Jersey, the first of which will roll out in Philadelphia in July.
• The nation’s first “The Original” Kono Pizza kiosk opened in The Florida Mall in Orlando. James Saliba, a French-American with more than 22 years of experience in the imported foods industry, secured rights to expand “The Original” Kono Pizza in the state of Florida.
• A second brick and mortar location, owned by husband and wife team franchisees Micah and Kelly Powers, opened last month in Le Mars, IA.

“We’re changing the pizza game. In a marketplace with more than 70,000 pizzerias and fast-casual pizza concepts, we stand alone with a unique pizza product,” Ragosa said. “The recent introduction of our mobile carts, kiosks and in-line stores will offer consumers the chance to enjoy one of their favorite foods in more locations, and while on-the-go.”

As it expands its presence around the country, “The Original” Kono Pizza will be exhibiting at the International Franchise Expo (IFE), to be held June 18-20 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York. The company’s founders and other key executives will be on hand at booth #816 providing pizza cone samples, showcasing the new models and discussing franchising opportunities with qualified candidates.

Served in a cone and filled with fresh, quality ingredients, with its dough and sauce imported straight from Italy, “The Original” Kono Pizza offers consumers a healthier, on-the-go alternative to one of their favorite foods. Featuring a thinner crust and low-moisture cheese, “The Original” Kono Pizza cones are only 250-280 calories each, compared to 450 calories in the average traditional pizza slice.

For franchisees like the Ciancaglinis, the flexibility of the “The Original” Kono Pizza franchise models in addition to the brand’s existing traditional retail store lets them purchase rights to operate sleek and sophisticated mobile carts, kiosks and in-line store models, giving them the ability to operate in a variety of high-traffic venues – from malls and hospitals to colleges and amusement parks. “We see huge potential for “The Original” Kono Pizza in our market and around the country. We opted for their cart model so that we can bring the products directly to a captive audience of people at festivals, sporting events and other gathering places.”

Ragosa said he expects the success in Philadelphia, Le Mars and Orlando to act as a catalyst for further expansion across the United States, inspiring like-minded entrepreneurs to get in on the ground floor with an innovative franchise in the fast-casual pizza segment.

About “The Original” Kono Pizza
Founded in Edison, N.J., “The Original” Kono Pizza was established in the United States in 2013 by seasoned entrepreneurs David Ragosa and Carlo Ruggiero, who took the already popular European concept and brought it to America. Kono Pizza cones are filled with fresh, quality ingredients inspired by original Italian recipes, giving consumers an on-the-go, healthier way to enjoy their favorite food. There are currently 130 Kono Pizza locations operating in 20 countries, with 15 additional locations in various stages of development across the United States.

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