Italy’s last Domino’s Pizza restaurant has closed after the company that operated the store in the country went bankrupt.
Domino’s Pizza has struggled to attract customers in Italy since entering the market in 2015. The franchisee first filed for bankruptcy in early April after the business was hit by coronavirus restrictions.
“The Covid-19 pandemic and the ensuing protracted financial regulation have severely impacted ePizza,” the company said.
The company also said it faced increased competition as brick-and-mortar restaurants started using delivery apps.
As part of the bankruptcy process, the company received 90 days of protection from its creditors. However, the protection ended last month. The Italian company has already scaled back its activities and deliveries stopped at the end of July.
As of 2020, the company directly controlled 23 points of sale in Italy, another six were managed through subfranchises, according to the documents.
By contrast, the UK and Ireland have over 1,200 stores, making them the largest markets for Domino’s in Europe. The world’s largest pizzeria, his chain has over 18,300 locations in over 90 international markets, most of which are operated as franchises.
When it expanded to Italy seven years ago, Domino’s aimed to differentiate itself from the country’s traditional pizza makers with a full delivery service and a unique menu that included American-inspired recipes.
The news of Domino’s departure from Italy was well received by some social media users. Journalist Dave Jamieson said, “I was always thinking about how Dominoes would survive in New Jersey, let alone Italy.” I pointed out that it was like trying to sell.
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