MidiCi Neapolitan Pizza
- BizOp or Franchise: Franchise
- Name: MidiCi Neapolitan Pizza
- Category: Food & Beverage
- Subcategory: Pizza
- Minimum Investment: $190,000 USD
- Net Worth Requirement: $350,000 USD
- Home-based: No
- Passive investment allowed: Yes
- Financial Assistance: Yes
- Veteran discount: No
- Item 19 Not yet
Overall Rating (95 out of 100)
WHAT IS THE PRODUCT OR SERVICE THEY OFFER THE CONSUMER?
MidiCis is a pizza concept bringing wood-fired and authentic Neapolitan pizza pie to it’s guests at a fair and reasonable price. Their first corporate store opened in July of 2015 in Encino California. Their menu offers base-pizzas, starting at $6.50, for which you can add-on any combination of protein, cheese, and vegetables making each pizza a personalized entree. Specialty pizzas are also available, such as The Devil’s Pizza, a very spicy option that will satisfy the boldest of palettes. Varieties of salads are offered from Caprese and Caesar to Kale and Spring Garden. Wood-roasted coffee is an exceptional option here at MidiCis as it maintains the tradition of Italy with it’s espressos and lattes. Beer and wine present an added attraction and a signature dessert, Nutella Calzone, is a best seller that leaves your taste buds wanting more.
WHAT IS THEIR BUSINESS MODEL?
This restaurant resides in a retail brick & mortar space ranging from 2200 to 3800 square feet, and serves high-quality, healthy products. It is a relatively simple restaurant and is easier to run then other restaurants in the same category. It can be run as absentee or semi-absentee ownership as well as owner-operator. This is a cash business with no accounts receivable and minimum inventory is needed to operate. A combination of 20 to 40 part-time and full-time employees are typically required to fulfill the 11am to 1am hours of operation. They are open an extended hour to 2am on Friday and Saturday nights. You will pay a royalty fee of 4% of net sales (yes, I said net) and advertising fees of 2% nationally and 2% locally. The franchise fee is $45,000.
WHAT DO THEY OFFER THE BUSINESS OWNER?
The mentoring for the franchisee starts with a 30-day stellar education program at MidiCi Global Headquarters in Encino, CA, and continues throughout the life of the franchise agreement. Upon the grand opening of your store as a franchisee, you will receive 10 days of support from the corporate office and on-going field visits. There are over 100 people at the corporate headquarters all dedicated to helping you be successful. MidiCi also offers assistance with site selection and lease negotiation.
WHO ARE THEY LOOKING FOR?
If someone wants to be an owner of a MidiCi restaurant, it is helpful to have some management or business experience and/or food industry experience, but it is not always required. The main skills needed to operate would be management of personnel, customer service, and bookkeeping.
A day in the life of an owner/operator: You will be involved in all aspects of the business including leading the overall strategy and coordinating community events. You will oversee the inventory and bookkeeping, hire and manage the staff and preserve vendor relationships. Maintaining consistent guest experience and applying brand standards is critical to your success.
A day in the life of an absentee or semi-absentee owner: Finding and leading the right general manager of the store is the #1 most crucial task for an absentee owner. Finding someone you trust to follow all the guidelines with consistent performance will prove to make the most successful business. Once that is accomplished, your level of involvement can vary. It might include all that is listed above for owner/operator, or any combination of those tasks, depending on the quality, skillset and reliability of your general manager.
MY OWN OPINION
I visited the MidiCi’s global headquarters in Encino California in October of 2015. I was attending a “Discovery Day“. This is when a franchisor invites potential franchisees to visit their corporate office, and spend the day learning all there is to know about the franchise. Franchise brokers are also invited, to become familiar with the brand so that they can informatively present the franchise to their clients. MidiCi’s is developed by the same team as Menchies, the frozen yogurt franchise, so I am suspecting a similar course of successful growth as seen with the Menchies brand.
The Corporate Experience
The day started with a meet and greet, and introductions to the leadership team, and meeting the CEO, Amit Kleinberger. Several, including Development Managers, VP’s and Directors, spoke about their experiences and involvement with developing the brand and what their vision was for a successful franchise. Amit finished off the morning sharing his background and philosophies on building a brand. Amit is relatively young for what he has accomplished, earning recognition from Forbes Magazine for ”Most Promising CEO’s under 35” in 2013. Amit is a true leader and heads his staff with determination and heart. He is genuinely sincere and has a hug for just about anyone who shows support. He set the stage for what we had to look forward to with the remaining day. We were headed to the corporate store to experience the pizza concept.
The Restaurant, the Food
We boarded a bus to visit the Midicis corporate store a short ride from the global headquarters. Upon entering the restaurant, it had an upbeat and energetic vibe. Music played loudly and I could feel the liveliness of everyone around me. Straight ahead from the entrance, we came up to a counter where two guys were working some dough. Behind them, I could see the two wood-fired ovens that were imported from Naples. As we made our way to the right, we had to quickly think about what we wanted. I always worry when I go to a place where I can personalize my food, because I’m so indecisive….EVERYTHING looked so good. But I hurriedly decided on the House-Pesto base pizza and I added sausage and mushrooms. I then found out I could do a combination pizza or half & half, so I got Devil’s specialty pizza for the other half. As we rounded the corner where the salads were, I didn’t hesitate to order the Walnut and Gorgonzola salad. Yum! The staff were more like hosts of a dinner party then hired help…it was as though they invited me into their home to enjoy a meal. I was given a number and a marker to place on my table so they could find me to bring my food to me. As I made my way to a table, I passed a large, LIVE Olive tree in the middle of the restaurant, lit up by white lights…a very nice touch to the décor. I retrieved some water from the beverage area and took a seat. It was only moments later and I had a pizza in front of me. Those ovens can cook a pizza in 90 seconds! A bit later my salad arrived at which time I realized, “this is a ton of food”! I focused first on the salad, which was exceptional…I just love gorgonzola and atop arugula and walnuts, it’s divine. After the salad, I hardly had room for two slices of pizza, one from each side. The crust was perfect…you just can’t go wrong with a wood-fired crust, and the toppings were fresh and plentiful. The Devil’s pizza was pretty spicy, but nothing I couldn’t handle. I had to box up the rest of the pizza, and amongst all the brokers that were there with me….I was the only nut carrying around my leftovers! I brought it back on the bus, back into the building, into the conference room, then later back to the hotel. I wasn’t going to waste this luscious pie! What I didn’t realize, was that we were going back to the restaurant later for the dinner experience.
The Dinner Experience
Upon arriving at MidiCis, now the second time in one day, I was used to the procedure and went directly to the salad area. I ordered the Caprese salad and a glass of cabernet. It was a Simi 2013, Alexander Valley CA wine if that means anything to you. I do love my wine but I can’t say that I have discriminating tastes when it comes to the grape spirit. However, I must tell you about the Caprese salad….yes, a simple salad we make at home quite often made with mozzarella, sliced tomato and basil drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. But at MidiCis, it is a base of baby arugula and in the center is a ball of FRESH mozzarella topped with cracked pepper, with grape tomatoes and house made pesto and a dressing that was out of this world! Now, you know I couldn’t have been starving because I told you what I had for lunch a few hours earlier, but I have to tell you, it was the most heavenly thing I’ve eaten in a very long time. It tasted like they pulled the ingredients straight from a garden I imagined they had behind the restaurant. Do you have any memories of meals that you’ve had in the past that you have never forgotten? Well, this was one of those meals that I won’t ever forget. I’m amused at the fact that it is over a Caprese salad, of all things.
So, the dinner crowd was even more animated than the lunch crowd….maybe alcohol was the factor? It was happy hour, and there’s no doubt that spirits tend to kick-it-up-a-notch. We found a seat on the outdoor patio, a great option with California weather. I live in Phoenix, so when a restaurant offers outdoor seating here in the summer, if it doesn’t have misters, and high-powered fans, it tends to be unused. But it was a nice night in Sherman Oaks and the service was really great…I was never without wine!
MidiCis is all about gathering with friends and family. They’ve done a great job of capturing the part of Italy that makes food a celebration. They welcome guests to stay as long as they like and to savor the good time along with the cuisine. They have a phrase printed outside of their building that reads “People are the best thing that can happen to anyone”. Now, I don’t know about you, but there have been some people in my life that weren’t the best thing that happened to me, but on a scale from 1 to 10 and 10 being the highest, I give this statement a 9. Most people in my life have had a positive affect on me and MidiCis would like us to focus on that fact. Within our current world of terrorist attacks, greed and hopelessness, it’s comforting to know someone is promoting togetherness and trying to make the world a better place, one pizza at a time.
There are currently (December 2016) 20 MidiCi locations open and that includes the corporate store in Sherman Oaks, CA. There are several more in progress to be opening in the next 12 months. If you’ve been to the MidiCi in CA, please leave a comment below about your experience.
Although the expansion of the MidiCi Franchise is in it’s infancy stage, having a predecessor brand that was highly successful (Menchies) makes this one a favorable option. You may be saying, just as I did, “Another pizza joint?”, but Midici is transforming the concept into something that feels good and feels right. Be on the lookout for a Midici in your area….there are locations in progress in already 36 states and in Canada as of this post (July 2016). Might I remind you that their first store opened in July of 2015. Now, that is phenomenal growth in 4 months and if you are interested in opening a MidiCi franchise, you’d better hurry.
For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact me.