UNO Pizzeria & Grill, the restaurant chain known for its Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, introduced a new franchise concept that recreates the look and feel of the brand's original Pizzeria UNO Chicago location.

Uno prototypeImage courtesy of Uno Pizzeria & GrillThe new model offers franchisees a customizable floor plan model that allows them to take advantage of existing space and is flexible enough to accommodate a variety of sizes. Franchisees will also have the ability to add additional takeout- and delivery-only locations to expand reach with minimal build-out costs. Pizzeria UNO debuted its first new-concept restaurant in June in Highland, Indiana.

"Our new franchise concept with its highly configurable layout enables franchisees the ability to take advantage of existing spaces and opportunistic real estate which keeps build-out costs extremely low," says Erik Frederick, UNO's CEO. "The customizable nature also enables each restaurant to have a unique feel vs. some of the cookie-cutter/one-size-fits-all nature of other brands. Our goal is to provide franchisees an opportunity to participate in one of the largest restaurant categories with a premium brand that has an attractive ROI."

UNO has been making its deep-dish pizza since 1943, and one of the goals of the new Pizzeria UNO prototype is to continue that legacy with a menu that highlights the brand's pizza expertise. Pizzeria UNO will showcase its strong pizza heritage and credibility, but with a vibe that's more relaxed and reminiscent of a local pizza joint. A newly designed cooking allows for quicker pizza production time. A more condensed, pizza-centric menu offers customers UNO's famous Deep Dish Pizza and a selection of the brand's best-selling Chicago Thin Crust Pizza, as well as appetizers and salads.

The new concept has already signed on three new franchisees in 2021 and has plans for continued expansion heading into 2022. In addition to the new stand-alone and in-line sites that UNO was initially seeking hotel restaurant conversion, redevelopment and buildout has become a popular place of interest from early prospects. The UNO brand and product play well within the hotel restaurant framework — offering multiple revenue stream possibilities, including hotel guests dining-in and ordering take-out, as well as delivery to the local area.