Global fast-food chain Pizza Hut will close hundreds of its brick-and-mortar stores soon, a top executive said earlier this week.
The closure will apparently take place because the brand will now gravitate to a more deliver-oriented structure.
What’s more, this move is happening only in the US for now. At least, that’s what Yum Brands Chief Operating Officer David Gibbs said at a shareholders’ meeting on Thursday, August 8.
Yum Brands is the parent company of Pizza Hut, and the former’s CEO Greg Creed echoed Gibbs’ sentiments on Thursday.
What’s happening to Pizza Hut?
Creed told investors in a call on Thursday: “We plan to lean in to accelerate the transition of our Pizza Hut US estate to a more modern delivery- and carryout-focused asset base.”
He added: “This will ultimately position the Pizza Hut brand for many years of faster growth in the US.”
He also said that the prime targets for these closures would be only the underperforming dine-in outlets.
Gibbs, meanwhile, further explained why this move, which would see at least 400 restaurants close, was made necessary.
Speaking during the company’s declaration of second-quarter earnings, he said: “We have a lot of stores that were built in the right spot when they opened 30 or 40 years ago. But they are not in the right spot today for a modern delivery asset.”
He added: “If we can get those stores closed and put in the right trade area for delivery, obviously there’s going to be upside to sales for those units and better economics for the franchisee, better system sales, and a better image to our customer.”
Social media not pleased
People on social media soon took to their platforms of choice to express a variety of emotions after the announcement.
Here are some examples: