As you’ve probably already noticed, we disappeared from this blog for quite a long time. The reason is that we’ve been busy. Oxford is a college town in Mississippi where things get crazy during the fall. Students are back, and even more importantly, the football season takes off. Now it’s over, and we can finally catch our breath and sum everything up.
Dodo Pizza’s headquarters is starting a new round of negotiations with investors. We’re growing globally (for instance, Dodo Pizza opened in China in June) and need a few more millions to feed our expansion. As part of this process, our small American branch, which now consists of only one pizzeria in Oxford, was asked to outline a long-term plan for the US market.
Dodo Pizza has been working in Oxford for more than a month. That gives us the opportunity to perform an intriguing experiment and compare our actual results with our now half-a-year-old expectations. In a startup, such a task always brings the joy of discovery because after launching your business, you’re doomed to face something totally unexpected.
It’s been more than three weeks since we opened our first store in the US, and we’ve gotten some feedback from our customers. Almost every day, a few people ask if they can customize their pies. But they can’t. They won’t. We don’t allow that. Some people even get mad when they hear, “I’m sorry, but you can’t change the recipe.” Almost all pizzerias in the US have this option, but we have a whole bunch of reasons for not having it.
My father has never been to America and hasn’t met a single American in his entire life—and yet my dad is pretty sure that he knows everything about America and the Americans. He’s seen many movies, he’s heard some stories on the news, he’s read a few books—and now Dad is of the opinion that he doesn’t need anything beyond that to make his judgment. Here’s the thing. There are millions of people like him all over the world.