Value proposition

Custom-made, thin crust and fast-fired. Slice of Brooklyn does precisely what it says: delivering simple, delicious slices of New York to your table in seconds.

Adelaide-based, Slice of Brooklyn is a stand-alone fast-casual pizza restaurant with a twist.

Mirroring Subway’s business model, the store creates New York-inspired pizza combined with a build-your-own concept. Each pizza is fast-fired and ready in just two minutes, thanks to the store’s Italian stone-base oven which generates temperatures of 400C.

Founder and Bostonian pizza maker Ned Hasanoff drew inspiration from his time growing up in Brooklyn, New York, learning from classic New Yorker styled pizzerias.

Ned calls his style of pizza New Yorkapolitan – teaming a traditional Neapolitan style with the thin, hand-tossed crust and empty blistered cornicione of a New York pizza.

With already established pizza chains such as Domino’s and Pizza Hut dominating the Australian market, Slice of Brooklyn differentiates itself by offering a healthier alternative using natural ingredients and fresh toppings only.

It promises no sugar, no dough conditioners and no preservatives. In an attempt to create a nationwide franchise, the pizzeria is seeking funds to expand its operations interstate, initially into Melbourne, then along the East Coast.

Slice of Brooklyn is currently participating in an Expression of Interest on the Birchal crowd-sourced funding platform.

The company is contemplating equity crowdfunding as a source of finance to scale the business as a franchise. According to PRwire, Slice of Brooklyn will have a minimum offer of $100. The company also promises to offer profit-sharing dividends and lots of discounted pizzas for investors.

Business model

The Subway of pizzas, Slice of Brooklyn is attempting to challenge the fast food industry in Australia. With stores set out in a customer-centric manner, pizzas are constructed in full view of the consumer.

To begin, Slice of Brooklyn offers thinly rolled dough for which the customer can add an unlimited amount of all-natural ingredients and fresh toppings. Once the cooking process is complete, the time from order to eating is five to six minutes.

Slice of Brooklyn is looking to emulate stores such as Sumo Salad and Guzman Y Gomez, who have successfully entered into the Australian market. Hasanoff predicts to have up to 100 stores Australia wide in less than 10 years, drawing evidence from their projected revenue and total group sales.

Sales metrics

Since the company’s establishment in April 2018, weekly sales have tripled and the company has attracted positive reviews from mediums such as The Advertiser and Channel 44.

Already a proven concept in the US, Slice of Brooklyn hopes to mimic this success in Australia. In the US, fast-casual pizza restaurants have grown into a $1.2 billion phenomenon over the past seven years.

Most noticeable chain Blaze Pizza was named the fastest growing restaurant in the history of the US. Slice of Brooklyn hopes to replicate that success and growth in Australia on a per capita basis.

Industry

Fast casual dining has been the fastest growing area in dining in Australia over the last decade, and Hasanoff’s goal is to become Australia’s fastest growing and highest rated fast casual food player.

While the industry is lucrative, it is also extremely competitive with hundreds of different food options available. Honing in on just the pizza market, there are also many different competitors around, whether it is the big players such as Domino’s or Pizza Hut, or the local pizzeria down the road.

If Slice of Brooklyn is going to execute a successful pizza franchise, in my view the company must conduct a rigorous market research plan, perfecting their operations beforehand.

While the company exercises a persistent level of optimism, the food trade is deemed as one of the most relentless industries, eating up businesses that aren’t prepared for expansion.

Conclusion

Slice of Brooklyn’s mission stems from a sound reasoning; to match the success of the US pizza stores.

While the business may attract customers due to their differentiated offering, the US industry doesn’t always reflect future consumer needs in Australia. The pizzeria also operates in a highly congested industry which can limit the business’s growth of consumers.

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Former fund manager and finance academic, Dr Nigel Finch advises growing business on strategy execution, corporate governance and capital raisings. He has worked across all stages of the business cycle from start-ups to seasoned ASX-listed companies including many who have tackled Asia’s emerging markets. Authoring more than 5 books and 100 scholarly articles, Dr Finch has a thing or two to say about business.