Little Caesars Is Ready To Serve Up More Hot And Ready Pizzas

Known by customers for its wallet-friendly bread, wings, and $5 (well, $5.55) Hot-N-Ready pizza deal, Little Caesars first started in 1959 as a single family-owned operation in Michigan. The owners then franchised the brand in 1962, a decision that allowed it to grow exponentially over the following six decades. These days, Little Caesars stores are pretty much ubiquitous. With 4,181 locations across all 50 states and throughout the world, it is the third-largest pizza chain in the U.S., second only to Domino's and Pizza Hut (via QSR Magazine).

If your neighborhood isn't near one of these Hot-N-Ready pizza havens, that may be changing sooner than you think. According to QSR, Little Caesars announced this week that it plans to open a 1,000 new franchise locations over the next five to 10 years. The announcement comes just six months after the chain said it would add more than 200 new U.S. locations starting in 2022, making this new target much more ambitious initially planned.

The move also follows a year of what Forbes called "record sales" for the chain in 2021, largely thanks to a surge in business during the pandemic that saw people turning to takeaway meals like pizza, along with brand innovations like the introduction of delivery and a contactless pizza portal, which made getting popular Little Caesars menu items easier than ever.

Little Caesars isn't slowing its expansion any time soon

Even if some customers have returned to pre-pandemic dining habits these days, forgoing pizza delivery for sit-down dinners elsewhere, Little Caesars has made some changes in hopes of continuing its growth. QSR reports that Little Caesars is among restaurant chains that have raised their prices this year due to inflation and supply chain issues. Nevertheless, its $5.55 pepperoni pizza is still one of the cheapest options on the market.

Per Forbes, it also works to Little Caesars' advantage that it has so far managed to avoid some of the supply chain pitfalls that have affected other pizza businesses because it owns its food distribution center. And since the brand just announced that it's now the official pizza partner of the NFL, more locations may be a necessity as the brand serves droves of customers on game days. It's unclear where Little Caesars' hundreds of new locations will pop up, but the brand "is focused on markets like New England, Hawaii, and New York," reports QSR.