The MOD Pizza pizza-and-salad brand has been named this year’s winner of the Future 50 Pacesetter award, an honor recognizing the emerging chain that did the most outstanding job of capitalizing on its growth potential.
MOD was selected from among the hundreds of chains that have graduated from Restaurant Business’ Future 50 list, a yearly ranking of the fastest-growing chains with annual sales falling between $25 million and $50 million. As compiled by Technomic, each year’s Future 50 list showcases growth brands with the greatest potential of becoming a national powerhouse.
The Pacesetter award recognizes the outstanding performer among the onetime Future 50 chains that have zoomed past the $50 million threshold. Candidates must have generated a 10% year-over-year and five-year compound annual growth rate in sales and unit count.
Judges also look for bold leadership, a stable management team and a consistent long-term strategy.
The indicators for MOD were a 220.5% increase in systemwide sales, to $64.8 million for 2015, and a 100% jump in size last year, to 200 units in 20 states.
The fast-casual concept features customized pizzas cooked in an 800-degree oven. Patrons can also opt for a salad that’s tossed to their specifications. Customers are not charged extra for the toppings.
MOD (an acronym that stands for "made on demand") was founded in 2008 by Scott and Ally Svenson, the husband-and-wife team that formerly founded Seattle Coffee Co., a United Kingdom operation that was subsequently sold to Starbucks. Scott Svenson served after the sale as president of Starbucks’ European operations.
Scott serves today as CEO of MOD, and Ally holds the title of VP of brand.
The Pacesetter award will be presented to MOD at the annual Future 50 cocktail party during RB’s Restaurant Leadership Conference in Scottsdale, Ariz. This year’s RLC is slated for April 9-12.
Last year’s winner was the Which Wich fast-casual sandwich chain.
The Future 50 cocktail party and the Future 50 Pacesetter award are sponsored by Hormel.