Pizza Hut falls victim to COVID, hundreds of locations to close
One of the things New Jersey is known for is the selection, and quality, of its mom and pop pizzerias, but sometimes people need the convenience of a chain pizza. It looks like that option will be getting more limited in New Jersey as Pizza Hut has announced that it will be closing some 300 stores.
There are 76 Pizza Hut locations New Jersey, but it is not known how many of those stores will close, nor is the timetable of the closures. Technically, it is not Pizza Hut that is closing the locations, it is their largest franchisee, NPC International, which owns more than 1,200 Pizza Huts across the country that will be shuttering the restaurants; NPC filed for bankruptcy protection last month.
BACK TO SCHOOL — LIVE DISCUSSION THURSDAY: On Aug. 20 at 7 p.m., New Jersey 101.5, child well-being experts and educators will discuss plans to send kids back to school ... or not. Listen on New Jersey 101.5 FM, watch live at Facebook.com/NJ1015 or watch on the free New Jersey 101.5 app, and ask your questions in the live chat.
Ironically, another pizza chain, Domino’s, posted a 20% increase in sales during the pandemic and said that it was hiring more than 20,000 people to handle surging orders. Domino’s is almost exclusively delivery and carry-out.
The Pizza Hut locations that are on the chopping block are the ones that were more focused on in store dining which obviously became problematic during the shutdown. Those are the stores that do the least amount of their business via delivery and takeout. In its bankruptcy filing, NPC said that closing stores not designed for pick-up or delivery will allow it to invest in smaller stores that can better handle online orders. There are a total of 7,000 Pizza Huts nationwide; their parent company is Yum! Brands of Louisville, Kentucky.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.