Take-n-bake trend on the rise

Noble Roman's, Inc., the Indianapolis based franchisor of Noble Roman's Pizza and Tuscano's Italian Style Subs, announced that on Monday, Dec. 3, a franchisee opened a Noble Roman's stand-alone take-n-bake franchise in the Beach Grove section of the greater Indianapolis metro area. This stand-alone take-n-bake (TNB) franchise, dubbed "Noble Roman's Take-n-Bake P'za" leverages the popular Noble Roman brand, reputation for taste and quality, and the rapidly growing trend supporting the take-n-bake concept. The Beach Grove unit is located at 4850 S. Emerson Avenue, Indianapolis, IN.

The first Noble Roman's stand-alone TNB franchise opened in Oct. 29, 2012, and in the first 33 days, the initial unit generated an operating profit margin of 26.5%, even after the added labor cost involved in initial training, demonstrating the popularity of the concept and underscoring the value to franchise partners in this new and exciting concept.

"We are excited to open our second unit, and even more excited that our initial TNB unit reported a solid operating profit margin in the first month of operation, inclusive of additional training expenses related to the opening," says Paul Mobley, Chairman and CEO, Noble Roman's Inc. "It is unusual for franchise restaurants to turn a profit immediately, and even more unusual for a franchise tied to a new concept to turn an immediate profit, but the convenience and popularity of take-n-bake pizza, coupled with Noble Roman's strong brand reputation, makes this concept a powerful opportunity for potential franchisees."

"The expansion of this stand-alone take-n-bake store represents a key component of our growth strategy," Mobley says. "Take-n-bake remains the fastest growing segment of the pizza industry and this concept leverages our success in our non-traditional venues such as grocery delis, bowling and entertainment centers, and convenience stores. We expect to grow this concept throughout 2013, with additional units opening in the first quarter."

The Noble Roman's Take-n-Bake concept features the chain's popular traditional hand-tossed style pizza, Deep-Dish Sicilian pizza, the SuperThin pizza, and Noble Roman's famous breadsticks with spicy cheese sauce, all in a convenient cook-at-home format. Additional menu items will include such items as fresh salads, cookie dough, cinnamon rounds, bake-able pasta, cheesy sticks and more. The take-n-bake pizza design grew out of the rising popularity of take-n-bake generally, the Company's success in licensing over 1,350 groceries nationwide to carry Noble Roman's take-n-bake pizza, and the company's existing reputation for fun, great tasting pizza. The Noble Roman's stand-alone take-n-bake unit requires only 900 square feet with a minimal amount of equipment and build-out relative to a regular quick-service restaurant, resulting in a much lower investment cost. Additionally, the Company anticipates that the take-n-bake unit will require much less labor and other operating costs, such as utilities, making it simpler and more affordable to operate, contributing to a compelling franchise opportunity for potential franchisees.

As previously announced, the company has signed agreements thus far for eight stand-alone take-n-bake units all to be located in central Indiana. The first seven franchises were all sold to existing Noble Roman's franchisees. Two of the existing franchisees signed agreements for three units each and one existing franchisee signed for a single unit. The eighth agreement was signed for a location in Muncie, IN.