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Domino's Pizza Celebrates 50 by Changing Sauce, Cheese and Crust

ANN ARBOR, Mich. --- Domino's Pizza announced that a big change is in the works. Here's what the company said:

Approaching 50 years in the business, Domino's Pizza, the recognized world leader in pizza delivery, announced today it is changing its core pizza recipe. With a new garlic seasoned crust, robust sauce and more flavorful shredded cheese, Domino's new hand-tossed pizza has been reinvented to deliver more taste -- and Domino's is backing it up with a guarantee.

Rolling out over the course of the next few weeks, Domino's new pizza will be in all U.S. stores beginning December 27.

"2010 will be our 50th year in the business, and we are kicking it off with the most aggressive promotion in the history of our company," said Domino's Chairman and CEO David A. Brandon. "This is the biggest product introduction we've done since...well, pizza."

The primary changes include:

-- Crust - A garlic seasoned crust with parsley baked to a golden brown

-- Sauce - Sweeter, bolder tomato sauce with a medley of herbs and a red pepper kick

-- Cheese - Shredded cheese made with 100% real mozzarella and flavored with just a hint of provolone

Reinventing the Domino's Brand

"The fact is, we love our pizza, but as times change, so do consumer tastes," said Russell Weiner, Domino's Chief Marketing Officer. "We've created a pizza to reflect what consumers are looking for. We're not talking about a slightly-altered version of our previous pizza. It's a completely new pizza reinvented from the crust up, and we are proud of it. To us, it's as big as McDonald's changing the Big Mac, or Burger King reinventing the Whopper. We spent the last 18 months reinventing the brand in anticipation of our 50th anniversary."

Weiner noted that more than 80 percent of the Domino's menu is new since 2008. Added to the menu since that time:

-- Oven Baked Sandwiches, available in eight delicious varieties

 -- Domino's American Legends, a line of premium specialty pizzas

-- Breadbowl Pasta, five varieties of pasta baked into a seasoned bread bowl

-- Chocolate Lava Crunch Cakes, oven-baked chocolate cakes, crunchy on the outside, with warm flowing chocolate fudge inside

"The cherry on the top of all this recent innovation is our newly-inspired pizza," said Weiner. "Our inspiration came from the thousands of direct consumer feedback messages on several social media channels.

"Over a two-year period, we tested dozens of cheeses, 15 sauces, and nearly 50 crust seasoning blends and researched every possible combination with customers who order from us all the time and customers who haven't tried us in years. Our extensive research showed that the new pizza is significantly improved over our previous pizza."

Great Value Offer with Ads Featuring Real Domino's Team Members

Domino's Pizza will be marketing this new pizza aggressively in the next several weeks with advertising on many top-rated entertainment and sports programs, sampling opportunities throughout the country and a strong web-based presence, Weiner said.

The special introductory offer will be 2 medium, 2 topping pizzas for $5.99 each.

Advertising produced by creative agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky will include documentary-style anecdotes featuring real Domino's Pizza team members. The spots, filmed at Domino's World Resource Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan will show how the company took on the challenge of changing the negative perceptions of some consumers nationwide.

Putting Our Money Where Your Mouth Is

"We've long been known for service," said Weiner. "With this new pizza we are convinced Domino's can be known for both quality and service. That's why we're introducing this new pizza with a guarantee: If you are not completely satisfied with your Domino's pizza experience, we will make it right or refund your money.

"The entire company has been involved in this," Weiner continued. "From our CEO to our franchisees; from our supply chain division to our supply partners; from our product development team to our marketers -- everyone has had a hand in reinventing our pizza."


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