SOURCE: Hungry Howie's

January 23, 2007 08:00 ET

Hungry Howie's Pizza Set to Expand to Oregon & Washington

10-Store Agreement for Portland, Bend & Vancouver; First Store Is Expected by June

MADISON HEIGHTS, MI -- (MARKET WIRE) -- January 23, 2007 -- Hungry Howie's Pizza, a 550-store chain that has reinvented pizza by flavoring the crust eight different ways, plans to open 10 locations in Oregon and southwest Washington by 2011. The 10-store franchise agreement covers Portland, Bend and Vancouver. The first Hungry Howie's pizzeria in the area is expected to open in the Portland metropolitan area by June.

Franchisees Thomas Bauer and Frank Piacentini are lifelong friends, Eagle Scouts and Portland residents. Bauer's background includes operations, training and new store openings for a California hamburger chain. He has also served as vice president of training and education for an Oregon-based international finance company for 10 years. Piacentini is a residential and commercial real estate developer who worked for several quick and full service restaurants in his youth.

"I discovered Hungry Howie's when I was living in California, and the flavored crust concept struck home. It offers the same appeal as flavored bagels and breads: the ability to suit individual tastes and moods. You can not only have different toppings but different crusts every time you order," Bauer said. "There's nothing like it in Oregon or southwest Washington, and that point of distinction will set us apart from all the other look-alike chains."

Pizza crust flavors available from Hungry Howie's include original, ranch, onion, buttered, garlic herb, sesame seed, butter cheese and Cajun. Dough is prepared fresh every morning at each store. The menu also includes a lower-carb "crisp and thin" pizza crust, oven-baked calzone-style subs, Howie Wings, Howie Bread breadsticks with marinara sauce, and a variety of salads.

Most stores are located in strip malls and are carry-out/delivery operations only. Bright yellow tile lining the interior instantly identifies each location as a Hungry Howie's, home of the flavored pizza crust.

Hungry Howie's currently has 550 stores in 19 states. An additional 50 outlets are scheduled to open this year, including new locations in Arkansas, Idaho, Utah and Washington as well as Oregon that will expand the chain's footprint to 24 states. The company was founded in 1973 and began franchising in 1982. For more information, visit www.hungryhowies.com.

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