A Different Dough: Traverse City man goes from finance to Marco’s Pizza franchisee | Business

TRAVERSE Town — A person way or a different, Mark Smith just can’t seem to escape operating with dough.

But his hottest enterprise undoubtedly tastes a full lot better.

Marco’s Pizza — a Toledo, Ohio-headquartered franchise with a lot more than 1,000 merchants in 35 U.S. states and Puerto Rico — will have its 1st northern Michigan location following thirty day period when it opens at 916 U.S. 31 South in Blair Township. Marco’s Pizza will move into a portion of the previous home of Household Video clip, just north of Chum’s Corner.

Franchisee Smith — a certified general public accountant by trade who put in 10 several years with Rehmann and another 10 in threat management at Northwestern Bank and later on Chemical Financial institution, TCF and Huntington — is joyful to be having into a different variety of dough. Moreover it was a likelihood to do the job with his 4 teenage little ones.

“I resolved to test a little something new and entertaining,” the 1996 graduate of Traverse Town Central Significant University reported.

It adjusted his profession trajectory when he weighed his choices involving his earlier and future.

“Make pizza … chance management,” Smith said, whilst generating his fingers into an imaginary scale. “Make pizza wins out, at minimum in my mind.

“It’s also an chance to perform with my youngsters. It is thrilling. When I explained to them I was completely ready for a transform from banking, and they weren’t intrigued in banking, then I explained to them about Marco’s and they had been like, ‘Really? Are you major?’”

Smith is opening the initially Marco’s Pizza north of Ottawa County in about 1,500 sq. toes of area in the constructing that Loved ones Movie operated in prior to closing all of its outlets in early 2021.

The carry-out and shipping and delivery restaurant really should be open up by the center of March. Chess Building of Traverse Metropolis is undertaking the establish-out.

“We’re hopeful (it will be open up) by March 15, but we’re seeing some source-chain challenges,” Smith mentioned.

He to start with got a taste of Marco’s Pizza in Jenison. He and his loved ones were being fans at first chunk.

“I didn’t know it was a chain,” Smith stated. “I just thought it was a community pizza location which is high quality and well-operate.”

Smith, who signed his franchise settlement in February 2021, identified it’s not only a nationwide pizza chain, but a escalating one. He reported 2020 was a report 12 months for Marco’s “and 2021 just demolished it.”

While Marco’s Pizza is new to northern Michigan, Smith also realizes there are other solutions close by. Mancino’s Pizza and Grinders is positioned at 841 U.S. 31, Jet’s Pizza is at 3985 Beitner Street and Rico’s Café and Pizzeria is a Grawn mainstay.

“I like it,” Smith said of Marco’s. “I would not have performed this except if I believed it was significant quality. There’s a large amount of good pizza in the location and we just want to include to the combine. Good quality at a fantastic rate position.”

The new Marco’s Pizza will be carryout and delivery only. Smith explained there will be two entrances to the shop, a person in the front for the public and another on the side for workforce, which will also aspect two dedicated curbside parking spots for contactless shipping and delivery.

Smith — who put in six months operating at an East Lansing location ahead of opening his individual keep — stated all the pizza dough is created new each day. “That’s the Marco’s brand name,” he claimed.

The Marco’s menu capabilities traditional and primary specialty pizzas like the White Cheezy, Deluxe, All Meat or Create-Your-Have Pizza, in accordance to a release from the company. Smith stated Marco’s also features a gluten-pleasant pizza in addition to Pizza Bowls, a crustless pizza baked in a bowl.

Buyers can also find oven-baked subs, along with CheezyBread, Chicken Dippers and Wings, salads and desserts, according to a launch. A lot more information is offered at www.marcos.com.

Winding up within a previous Loved ones Video shop is also not a shock. Highland Ventures Ltd., the guardian corporation for Spouse and children Video, owned most of the buildings housing its roughly 250 destinations when CEO Keith Hoogland announced in early 2021 the outlets have been closing.

Jason Yuhasz, regional director of leasing and residence management for Highland Ventures, mentioned the firm has written some 220 leases in 2021 on the former Spouse and children Video clip spots, in some cases placing a number of distinctive businesses into just one creating.

“We’re filling them,” Yuhasz stated. “As a business, we’re producing a few to 6 leases a 7 days. The properties are filling quick.”

Filling them with a Marco’s Pizza is portion of it.

“They are closely invested in Marco’s,” Smith said of Highland Ventures. “There’s close to 150 Marco’s in previous Relatives Movie spots and about 35 are Hoogland family members franchisees.

“They pivoted properly to other firms.”

Smith really should know, much too. Each his father, Ron, and grandfather, Dick, have been a element of the northern Michigan genuine estate sector for many years.

The third generation just took a minor diverse route, like a 20-12 months detour in finance and accounting.

“I just needed a little something different,” Mark Smith reported. “I like pizza. I required to operate with my children and have a improve of rate.”