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Little Caesars now has heated pickup stations

The company's Pizza Portal works with the chain’s mobile app for pickup orders.
Photograph courtesy of Little Caesars

Little Caesars is stepping up its takeout efforts.

The Detroit-based pizza chain is nearly finished installing its Pizza Portals—heated, self-service pickup stations for mobile orders—at all of its more than 4,000 restaurants nationwide. The company claims the portal is the first of its kind in the restaurant industry.

The portal is designed to work alongside the company’s mobile app, enabling customers to preorder their pizzas and bypass the counter to get their order. The customers use either a QR code or a three-digit pin, which opens the secured, heated compartment where the pizzas are kept.

“We are constantly striving to enhance the guest experience for all customers, no matter how they choose to access Little Caesars,” David Scrivano, president and CEO of the chain, said in a statement. “We’re using our Pizza Portal pickup and mobile app to expand our offerings, as well as evolve our business model in an increasingly diverse and digital marketplace.”

The portals, which the company began testing last year, improve Little Caesars’ competitiveness for the pickup business amid intense competition in the pizza sector. That includes fellow Michigan company Domino’s, which has made an aggressive play for customers who pick up their orders rather than have them delivered.

Little Caesars has long staked its claim to such business with its $5 Hot-N-Ready pizzas. But the company has been working to improve its efforts more recently, especially with its mobile app.

The company recently added fingerprint and facial ID capability to its app and has mobile payment with Apple Pay for iPhone customers. The app automatically detects the closest restaurant and has a custom pizza builder. Orders can be placed six days in advance.

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