&pizza lands $25M investment and a spot in the Big Apple
We're more than a month away from the big giving holiday, but that didn't stop investors from pledging to give &pizza $25 million of growth capital to fund what a news release called a "rapid expansion into several major markets, including New York City."
Family office investment firm, Avalt, led the charge on this gift, with other significant shareholder participation, as well. Avalt has invested in brands like Domino's Pizza, Dunkin' Donuts and Outback Outback Steakhouse previously.
The announcement came in tandem with another stating &pizza will open its first location in the Big Apple's NoMad neighborhood in the middle of next year. The company stated it will be a starting point for expansion throughout the city and state.
"We are approaching this next phase of growth with the same excitement as when we opened our first location," said &pizza CEO Michael Lastoria in a news release. "Due to the success we have enjoyed and achieved to date, &pizza generated significant investment interest. We ultimately chose AVALT given their deep and relevant investment experience, and desire to create a long term partnership to help us embark on the next level of our ambitious journey.
"This funding will guarantee a continued focus on the growth of our business and our Tribe members. It allows us to expand our reach and preach the gospel of &pizza not only deeper inside the city limits of the nation's capital, but far beyond. Continuing to incorporate the DNA of each community we serve, and leading the movement and being a voice of #fightfor15 is all we could ever ask for."
For its part, Avalt founding partner, Ian Reynolds, said the company is fully on-board to help the brand move beyond its D.C. birthplace.
"While there are many players in the high-growth fast casual pizza segment, &pizza wins on their uniqueness of vision, taste of their pizzas and the quality of their Tribe. We look forward to helping Michael and his team bring that phenomenal experience to pizza lovers in New York and beyond," said Reynolds.
&pizza started four years ago in the nation's capital and focuses on both the culture of its business and the surrounding culture of the neighborhood it sets up shops in, with local art work and other elements of community support and connection.