Quick-service restaurant Fazoli’s, recently rated No. 2 overall among large national fast food chains in the Zagat Survey, is extending its brand to grocery store shelves.
The growing chain has launched four Italian entrees and two side dishes targeted at busy consumers who don’t have time at home to prepare a meal. The heat-and-serve entrees are Creamy Penne Alfredo with Roasted Chicken and Broccoli; Five-Cheese Lasagna with Meat Sauce; Shrimp Rustica with Bowtie Pasta in Cream Sauce; and Penne Marinara with Meatballs and Italian Sausage. The suggested retail price is $6.99 for each entrée and $4.49 for the side dishes, which include Cheese Ravioli in Asiago Cream Sauce and Cheese Tortellini with Rustica Cream Sauce.
These products are now available in the refrigerated meat case of supermarkets including Schnuck’s, Shop ‘n Save and A&P, and in the next few months will be at more retail chains including Marsh, Safeway, Meijer and others.
“This strategy will drive top-line revenue and keep consumers thinking about Fazoli’s even when they are not eating out,” said Carl T. Howard, Fazoli’s president and CEO.
According to Howard, the products will be marketed through print advertising and public relations.
“Having dramatically improved the variety and quality of our restaurant food puts us in a great position to extend the Fazoli’s brand to the retail market,” he said.
Fazoli’s has partnered on this project with The Valen Group, which develops strategic brand licensing programs for restaurants using consumer research as a tool for decision making. Its research has repeatedly shown that restaurants offering restaurant-quality products in retail groceries typically increase visits to their restaurants, a news release says.
“Fazoli’s is uniquely positioned to provide innovation and excitement to this category,” said Gus Valen, CEO of The Valen Group. “We identified refrigerated entrees and sides as an area where the brand could be differentiated from competitive products and offer consumers convenient, Italian at-home meals.”
Fazoli’s, which has 220 restaurants, is owned by Sun Capital Partners.