New Franchise Partner Expands the Craft Beer Authority’s Presence
Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, an energetic and welcoming full service restaurant known for its delicious, handcrafted pizza, distinctive taproom fare and world class local and regional craft beer selection, announced today that it signed a franchise development agreement with a new franchise partner, ROC Taproom, Inc., to take over four existing Old Chicago locations, and open three new restaurants growing Old Chicago’s footprint over Iowa.
“We’re thrilled to be continuing nationwide expansion with franchise partners who have been committed to accelerating the growth and success of Old Chicago,” said Mark A. Belanger, CFE, Vice President of Global Franchise Operations and Development for CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc., operating company of Old Chicago. “We’re continuing to make significant investments into our company that reinforce Old Chicago’s growth potential and position our franchisees for success, so that they ultimately want to expand their portfolio and introduce Old Chicago to new markets. These agreements are a testament to the strength of our evolving business model and exceptional offerings, and we look forward to developing new Old Chicago locations across the country.”
Jeff Ruppel of ROC Taproom, Inc. purchased four Iowa stores from an existing franchisee, and signed an agreement in May 2017 with plans to open three additional restaurants in the Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, and West Des Moines, Iowa areas. “We are very excited to be partnering with such a great franchise. We researched several other franchises and we felt Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom far surpassed the others in their operations, loyalty program, and marketing,” said Jeff Ruppel, owner of ROC Taproom, Inc.
Old Chicago opened eight new locations in 2016 growing their presence in Texas, North Carolina, Missouri, and Colorado. 2017 adds an additional eight restaurants including locations in Colorado, South Carolina, Kansas, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Wyoming. “We are thrilled to announce that we have signed 48 new unit development agreements this year. We are excited for our future growth in 2018 and beyond” states Belanger. With its 5,000 square foot building with an additional 1,000 square feet of outdoor patio space, upgraded bar technology, enriched guest proven menu categories, and thorough beer-centric hourly training, Old Chicago continues to further enhance the guest experience.
A growing brand with over 16 years of successful franchise partnerships, Old Chicago is an established multi-unit concept with proven processes to support franchisees with site selection, lease agreements, facility design, operational training and marketing. To fuel franchise growth, the company is seeking multi-unit operators with business, management and foodservice and/or restaurant experience, and a passion for and commitment to exceptional customer service. For information about franchise opportunities, visit www.ocfranchising.com.
Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom (Old Chicago) is a traditional, casual dining restaurant specializing in Chicago-style pizzas, taproom classics and craft beer. Founded in 1976, Old Chicago operates in 22 states with more than 100 restaurants. With over 30 craft beers on tap, Old Chicago is also the home of the World Beer Tour, which rewards members for enjoying 110 of the best craft beers from across the globe. Visit www.oldchicago.com to learn more and to find the restaurant nearest you. For information about franchise opportunities, visit www.ocfranchising.com.
CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. is the largest craft brewery restaurant operator in the country with nearly 200 franchised and company-owned restaurants primarily operating under the Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants and Rock Bottom Restaurants & Breweries brands. As a leader in the craft beer focused casual dining segment, CraftWorks also operates strong regional brands, and employs more than 12,000 people throughout the U.S. All of CraftWorks’ restaurant brands have innovative menus with made-from-scratch food and a vast selection of unique craft beer, as well as unbeatable service and loyalty programs with over a half-million active members. Based in Broomfield, Colo., CraftWorks is not only committed to serving its loyal guests, but also the communities in which its restaurants operate. The CraftWorks Foundation has contributed millions of dollars, positively impacting communities throughout the country. For additional information about CraftWorks, the Foundation, and its restaurant brands, please visit www.craftworksrestaurants.com.