Move recognizes former COO for igniting growth, improving tech, OPS
Marco’s Pizza promoted Tony Libardi, president and chief operating officer, to the position of co-CEO and president, setting the stage for a future leadership transition. Libardi came over to Marco’s Pizza from Burger King in 2014, igniting same-store sales growth at the pizza chain and increasing unit count by 100 percent while growing franchisee profitability.
Libardi joined Marco’s then-chief executive, Jack Butorac, in the executive suite in December. Butorac became CEO in 2004.
In addition, he made major tech advances, including consolidating stores to a single POS (point-of-sale) system and introducing online ordering, the Marco’s mobile app and third-party delivery. During his tenure, Marco’s Pizza launched its first national advertising campaign and improved operational standards, while posting double-digit same store sales in 2020, as well.
Indeed, 2020 was an impressive year for Marco’s Pizza, as suggested by a recent announcement. Libardi is credited with leading his team to new development agreements for 114 stores and opening 70 new units, including the milestone 1000th store.
[Related article: Marco’s Pizza opens milestone 1000th store]
Butorac said, “Under Tony’s leadership, Marco’s evolved into a performance-driven culture that revolves around putting ‘People First.’ Marco’s has doubled in size with a tremendous group of franchise partners. We are very proud of the dedication, commitment and the overall impact he’s had on this brand.”
During the pandemic, Marco’s Pizza accelerated the testing of pilot programs including ghost kitchens in several strategic markets, fast rollout of third-party delivery, and testing of robotic kitchen automation that the Toledo, Ohio-based pizza chain says improves efficiencies “without compromising pizza quality or craftsmanship.”
Marco’s Pizza operates and franchises more than 1,000 pizza locations. Its stores posted an approximate $918K AUV in 2019.
Photo credit: Marco’s Pizza (featured preview image)
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