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  • 4/24/2024

    Domino's Tips Customers Who Tip Delivery Drivers

    Dominos You Tip

    Domino's Pizza Inc.  is launching You Tip, We Tip – a promotion that tips customers who tip their delivery drivers, beginning April 29, 2024.

    "Domino's drivers have been hustling to deliver hot, delicious pizzas since 1960, and we love that customers have been tipping them for their great service since day one," said Kate Trumbull, Domino's senior vice president – chief brand officer. "But these days, everywhere you go, there's a tip screen. The pressure to tip is real, even when no extra service is provided. So, we decided to flip the script and show our appreciation by tipping customers back." 

    In fact, in HT's 2024 Restaurant Industry Outlook,  one executive said tipping is "turning customer sentiments negatively."

    How Does You Tip, We Tip Work?


    When customers tip their Domino's delivery driver $3 or more online, they'll receive a $3 coupon to use on the following week's online delivery order. \

    Domino's is the first quick-service restaurant to tip customers for tipping their delivery drivers. To learn more about Domino's You Tip, We Tip promotion, visit dominos.com/youtipwetip.

  • 9/14/2023

    Domino's Updates Rewards Program

    Dominos Rewards Updated

    Domino's Pizza Inc. introduces its new and improved loyalty program. 

    Domino's Rewards offers loyalty members even more opportunities to earn and redeem points across its corporate and franchise store locations. Domino's enhanced rewards program allows customers to:

    • Earn points for less
      • Loyalty members will now earn 10 points on every order of $5 or more
    • Redeem points for even more menu items – and earn free Domino's after just two orders
      • Members can redeem a variety of points for more menu items:
        • 20 points: A free dipping cup, a 16-piece order of Parmesan Bread Bites or a 20 oz. drink
        • 40 points: An order of Bread Twists or Stuffed Cheesy Bread
        • 60 points: A medium, two-topping pizza; pasta; Oven-Baked Sandwich; or a 3-piece order of Chocolate Lava Crunch Cakes
    • Earn more rewards
      • Loyalty perks are now even better, as members will have exclusive access to member-only deals, special discounts and opportunities to earn bonus points!

    "We are thrilled to give the brand's loyal customers additional ways to earn free Domino's items more often," said Mark Messing, Domino's vice president of digital experience and loyalty. "At a time when most brands are scaling back their loyalty programs and making it more difficult to earn and redeem points, Domino's is doing the opposite. We want to make it easier to reward our customers and give them more options so they can get rewarded faster."

    Marketing a LTO 

    From now until Oct. 22, 2023, rewards members can take advantage of a limited time offer to redeem 20 points for a free order of Domino's new Pepperoni Stuffed Cheesy Bread, which is normally a 40-point redemption, in celebration of the product's recent launch. 

  • 4/24/2024

    Under New Ownership: Tropical Smoothie Cafe

    Tropical Smoothie Cafe

    Tropical Smoothie Cafe is changing hands. 

    Private equity funds managed by Blackstone have entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Tropical Smoothie Cafe from Levine Leichtman Capital Partners. This buyout intended to help accelerate Tropical Smoothie Cafe's expansion through continued investment in menu innovation, operating excellence, and best-in-class marketing.

    Blackstone has a long history of successfully propelling the growth of leading franchisors, including in its previous acquisitions of Hilton Hotels and SERVPRO. 

    Tropical Smoothie Cafe began operating as a single location on a beach in Destin, Florida in 1997, and has grown into a nationally recognized brand with more than 1,400 locations in 44 states across the U.S. today. Known for its delicious mix of smoothies and food offerings, the company opened more than 175 new locations in 2023 alone, 70 percent of which were opened by existing franchisees. Tropical Smoothie Cafe has also been ranked #1 in the Smoothie/Juice Category by Entrepreneur Franchisee 500 for four consecutive years.

    Peter Wallace, a Senior Managing Director in Blackstone’s Private Equity business, said, “Tropical Smoothie Cafe has had an impressive growth trajectory consistently building on its loyal customer base as it has scaled nationwide. Blackstone has deep experience helping accelerate the expansion of leading franchise businesses as one of our highest-conviction investment areas. We believe our capital and resources will help position Tropical Smoothie Cafe for continued success and innovation for the benefit of its guests and franchisees.”

    Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

  • 4/23/2024

    Leanpath, Galley Solutions Integrate to Drive Faster, More Precise Food Waste Reduction

    food waste compost

    Leanpath builds on its integration capability with menu management systems, announcing a partnership with Galley Solutions and its culinary operating system.

    Leanpath's intelligent food waste prevention platform is a complete solution that allows foodservice kitchens to understand what they are wasting and why it's being wasted. Leanpath's analytics, reporting, and automated prevention tools empower kitchens to stop that waste from reoccurring.

    At MURTEC 2023, Hospitality Technology presented Leanpath with the Industry Hero Award for its contributions in reducing food waste.

    The new integration between Leanpath and Galley Solutions imports customers' daily menus into the Leanpath food waste tracking platform. This enables kitchen staff to more easily and precisely identify what foods are being wasted and to make more informed adjustments to planning menus, automating production, and optimizing purchasing to prevent that waste in the future.

    "We're always trying to shave some pennies off our cost per meal," says Chef Antonio Pignagrande, Director of Culinary Enablement with Harvest Table Culinary Group, an early adopter of the new integration. "The best way to do that is to not put food in the trash to begin with. Leanpath helps us avoid that food waste, and the integration with Galley Solutions is the next evolution of that work. It's going to allow us to understand where the opportunities are to reduce waste down to the recipe level."

    "At Leanpath, we're laser-focused on helping our customers go beyond just gathering food waste data by turning that data into actions that reduce waste," says Leanpath VP of Product Brennan Hogan. "With this new integration, Galley Solutions customers are going to be able to drive even more precise and impactful food waste actions."

    "This integration highlights the importance of the Galley Solutions culinary operating system as the hub of customer's food data," says Galley Solutions CTO Matt Ferguson. "Having that clean food data for things like recipes, ingredients, menus and vendor items is what makes this integration with Leanpath so effective for our customers."

  • 4/23/2024

    Shaquille O'Neal's Big Chicken, Radyiant Team Up to Revamp In-Store Experience

    Big Chicken by Shaq and Raydiant digital menu boards

    Raydiant announced a new partnership with Shaquille O'Neal-owned Big Chicken.

    Big Chicken approached Raydiant in 2023 with a challenge to enhance the in-restaurant experience across all the brand's franchise locations. Over several meetings, Raydiant demonstrated how its cloud-based system, which seamlessly integrates with Big Chicken's strategic POS provider partner PAR/Brink, could power dynamic digital menu boards and enable real-time content updates based on item availability or limited-time promotions.

    The solution proved highly successful and brought substantial ROI to Big Chicken, leading to excitement about rolling out Raydiant as a main tech solution for all store locations.

    As part of the partnership, Raydiant will provide white-glove service to all the star-powered chicken chain locations, handling content creation and management for digital screens on behalf of the brand. Raydiant also showcased its offerings to franchisees at Big Chicken's recent annual franchisee meeting, generating significant interest and commitments from more than 10 franchise owners to implement the solution due to the near-immediate impact they witnessed.

    "We are thrilled to be selected as Big Chicken's digital experience and in-location operating system partner," said Bobby Marhamat, CEO of Raydiant. "This partnership is a testament to our platform's impact on brick-and-mortar brands looking to create more engaging in-location experiences that drive repeat visits and revenue. We look forward to building on our success and bringing Big Chicken's lively in-restaurant experience to fruition across all locations."

    The companies are also exploring future solutions, including drive-thru signage, programmatic advertising opportunities, and deploying Raydiant's Visitor Insight offering to provide location-based analytics on customer behavior.

  • 4/23/2024

    IHOP Adds More Virtual Brands

    VDC IHOP virtual brands

    Virtual Dining Concepts (VDC) expands its collaboration with IHOP, allowing three of VDC's top brands to be available for delivery from IHOP restaurants nationwide.

    The collaboration introduces two new brands, NASCAR Refuel Tenders & Burgers, developed in collaboration with the popular American auto racing company, NASCAR, and MLB Ballpark Bites Presented by Mastercard, created in partnership with Major League Baseball (MLB), and expands on the popular virtual brand, Pardon My Cheesesteak

    At MURTEC 2024, Dine Brands' CEO John Peyton talked about its use of virtual brands, specifically at its IHOP locations.  Since IHOP serves guests mostly in the mornings, it has the space within its kitchens for these brands that target dinner and late night hour diners, he shared. 

    "We are thrilled to join forces with IHOP, as this presents an incredible opportunity to expand VDC's presence and serve our brands to new guests across the country," said VDC Co-Founder, Robbie Earl. "This embodies our commitment to delivering exceptional food and experiences across the country with top restaurant chains."

    Demonstrating the powerful impact of this relationship, VDC and IHOP have successfully secured placement of the three brands in more than 1,000 IHOP restaurants nationwide. As of Q1 2024, Pardon My Cheesesteak is being served at over 900 IHOP locations, while NASCAR Refuel Tender & Burgers are currently served in over 400 locations, with an additional 130 locations slated for the near future. Looking ahead, VDC and IHOP are committed to further innovation.

    Delivering Incremental Sales 

    "Our off-premise channels continue to deliver incremental sales and profits to our franchisees and the IHOP brand. Our work with VDC and the three brands we're implementing will be a growth driver for our restaurants, specifically as we look at non-peak hours during lunch, dinner and late night," said Jay Johns, President of IHOP. "These new brands are relevant for today's consumer and perfect for our existing equipment and capabilities in our restaurants nationwide."

    Pardon My Cheesesteak, NASCAR Refuel Tenders & Burgers and MLB Ballpark Bites Presented by Mastercard are now available for delivery in select cities nationwide, with additional locations slated for the near future. Fans and guests can place their orders online at joinvdc.com/brands

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