Pizza Hut's Largest Franchisee Says Menu Revamp Hasn't Helped Sales

The pizza chain's transition to the 'Flavor of Now' hasn't been a smooth one.

learn more about Kate Taylor

By Kate Taylor

kunanon |

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Pizza Hut's move to double its menu hasn't come close to doubling sales.

NPC International, Pizza Hut's largest franchisee, reported last week that sales at the company's Pizza Hut locations fell 3.5 percent in the fourth quarter from the same period last year. As a result, the company generated a net loss of $100,000 for the quarter.

The company pointed to Pizza Hut's 'Flavor of Now' brand positioning as partially responsible for the decline. Pizza Hut introduced the brand revamp in November, with quirky new crusts, sauces and toppings, as well as a redesigned website, logo, pizza boxes and employee attire.

"While we continue to see a significant increase in our digital business mix, the new positioning is not yet yielding the improved sales results that we were anticipating," NPC CEO Jim Schwartz said in a statement. "We believe that the transition to the 'Flavor of Now' positioning provides a diverse flavor platform that better connects with millennials and provides the brand a leveragable point of differentiation. However, there is much work to be done to bring more awareness of the 'Flavor of Now.'"

Related: The Future Has Arrived: You Can Now Order Pizza From Your Smartwatch

NPC International operates 1,277 Pizza Hut locations in 28 states, as well as 143 Wendy's locations in five states.

Yum Brands has posted similarly disappointing earnings for Pizza Hut. In February, the company reported that in the fourth quarter, Pizza Hut same-store sales were flat from the same quarter a year ago. Same-store sales for the full-year were down 1 percent.

At the time, Yum CEO Greg Creed acknowledged that the revamp had not yet translated into sales. "While the initial relaunch of the Pizza Hut brand in the U.S. did not deliver the sales lift we expected, consumers have responded positively to the new menu and we intend to leverage this more effectively going forward," he said.

The Flavor of Now has the potential to set Pizza Hut apart from the competition, as no other pizza chain is serving up honey Sriracha sauce or fresh spinach toppings. However, to successfully set themselves apart, Pizza Hut needs to prove that these new offerings are something that customers are actually craving.

Related: Soon, a Third of U.S. Pizza Huts Will Sell Gluten-Free Pizza

Kate Taylor


Kate Taylor is a reporter at Business Insider. She was previously a reporter at Entrepreneur. Get in touch with tips and feedback on Twitter at @Kate_H_Taylor. 

Related Topics

Editor's Pick

Everyone Wants to Get Close to Their Favorite Artist. Here's the Technology Making It a Reality — But Better.
The Highest-Paid, Highest-Profile People in Every Field Know This Communication Strategy
After Early Rejection From Publishers, This Author Self-Published Her Book and Sold More Than 500,000 Copies. Here's How She Did It.
Having Trouble Speaking Up in Meetings? Try This Strategy.
He Names Brands for Amazon, Meta and Forever 21, and Says This Is the Big Blank Space in the Naming Game

How to Detect a Liar in Seconds Using Nonverbal Communication

There are many ways to understand if someone is not honest with you. The following signs do not even require words and are all nonverbal queues.

Business News

American Airlines Sued After Teen Dies of Heart Attack Onboard Flight to Miami

Kevin Greenridge was traveling from Honduras to Miami on June 4, 2022, on AA Flight 614 when he went into cardiac arrest and became unconscious mid-flight.

Business News

Jake Paul and Lindsay Lohan Fined $400,000 for 'Illegally Touting' Crypto

The SEC just disclosed that eight celebrities agreed to a massive settlement without admitting guilt.


After Early Rejection From Publishers, This Author Self-Published Her Book and Sold More Than 500,000 Copies. Here's How She Did It.

Author Karen Inglis breaks down the strategies and tactics you need to generate awareness and sales for your self-published book.

Business News

These Are the Most and Least Affordable Places to Retire in The U.S.

The Northeast and West Coast are the least affordable, while areas in the Mountain State region tend to be ideal for retirees on a budget.