Studio Movie Grill (SMG), the largest dine-in cinema circuit in the North American market, will be launching its own virtual pizza brand, 540 Pizza & Calzones, as a delivery-only concept in California and Chicago through the Grubhub food delivery app.
The service is scheduled to go live on February 5, 2021 in three California sites (Rocklin, Bakersfield, Simi Valley) and one suburban Chicago location (Wheaton, IL). Orders can be placed for delivery through Grubhub Thursday through Sunday from 3pm to 9pm.
The pizzas on offer will be made fresh to order at participating SMG locations’ kitchens. Menu prices will range from $10 to $13 and include popular items from the dine-in menu.
“We’re aligning 540 with the SMG brand as an affordable luxury,” said Brian Hood, SVP Operations. “540 Pizza & Calzones features a high-quality, adventurous product lineup at very reasonable prices. Pizzas have always been a top-seller for us, and we wanted to build on a guest favorite.”
“Our people are really the secret sauce behind the 540 menu; our chefs across the country worked tirelessly crafting the perfect recipes,” shared Hood. “The changing business conditions created the right opportunity for us to utilize our kitchens and allow our culinary teams to explore new menu offerings without the challenges of in-theater dining and service.”
The move comes as the circuit continues to weather the financial fall-out of the Covid-19 crisis. SMG was a pioneer in turning to take-out concessions from its kitchen early on in the pandemic, now extending the concept through its own virtual pizza brand.
“SMG’s decision to test a virtual brand seems natural. The teams have executed well, allowing us to realize a new incremental revenue stream that has continued growth potential, “said Tonya Mangels, Head of Revenue & Marketing. “The movie industry is still challenged by lack of film releases which we can’t control. SMG is uniquely positioned to capitalize on our culinary expertise, passion for service, and commitment to innovation in our fight to survive the pandemic.”
“Given SMG’s ample commercial kitchen facilities, culinary chefs and systems, we have the bandwidth for very high volumes,” noted Mike Dingess, Training Manager. “Our teams are poised to effectively support multiple brands as consumer response dictates.”
Studio Movie Grill operates a total of 353 screens across 10 states in the United States.