Antioch Pizza Shop is looking to expand to Northwest Indiana.
The Antioch, Illinois-based pizzeria, based in Lake County up against the Wisconsin state line, has opened three new restaurants in Illinois and Wisconsin this year at a time when 17% of restaurants have reportedly closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Antioch Pizza aims to expand to 30 restaurants by 2026, and has identified the Hammond as a major target for expansion "because of its attractive and stable real estate market and growing business communities."
A neighborhood pizzeria for more than four decades, Antioch Pizza Shop is now looking to grow through franchising. It has seven locations and another three in development as it eyes expansion across select markets in the Midwest and South.
“We pride ourselves on providing high-quality food and creating meaningful experiences for every customer. These are some of the key elements which set us apart from other concepts,” said Art Wicklein, co-owner of Antioch Pizza Shop. “We’ve seen how our dedication to the local communities we serve has bred success, and we think that it’s time the people of Hammond experience what makes Antioch Pizza special.”
The pizzeria was founded in 1977 with a recipe shared by friends. It was purchased by Antioch natives Art and Karen Wicklein, who are married, in 2008. They hope to grow it across Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Tennessee and Wisconsin.
“We wanted to start a concept that was recession-proof. Our business has stood the test of time and more,” said co-owner Karen Wicklein. “Today, our team is looking to grow with like-minded franchise owners who share our passion for community and our mission of phenomenal customer service.”
The pizzeria — whose slogan is "it's not just pizza, it's passion" — specializes in Chicagoland favorites like tavern-cut pizza, Italian beef sandwiches and hot dogs. It also had innovative menu items like a double-decker pizza stuffed with fresh mozzarella and other toppings.
The menu also includes sandwiches, pasta, wings, salads and ice cream.
Antioch Pizza Shop is looking for franchisees to open one or more locations in Northwest Indiana. They must invest between $135,000 and $495,500 and have a minimum net worth of $250,000.
For more information, visit antiochpizzashopfranchise.com or www.antiochpizzashop.com.