Domino's Pizza Chairman Stephen Hemsley to resign

Domino's Senior Independent Director Ian Bull will be assuming the role of an Interim Chairman.
  • Vaishnavi Gupta Features Writer
Domino's Pizza

Domino's Pizza Group has announced that its long-serving Chairman Stephen Hemsley will step down from the board. The move comes four months after the British pizza delivery chain announced the retirement of its Chief Executive Officer.

Hemsley was hired as Domino's non-executive Chairman in March 2010. He will exit from the company on December 29.

Domino's Senior Independent Director Ian Bull will be assuming the role of an Interim Chairman.

The company said, “The search for a new chairman is progressing, and will be followed by the appointment of a new CEO.”

In August, Chief Executive Officer David Wild retired after the company said earlier this year that it was considering replacing its CEO and Chairman in the wake of the Financial Reporting Council's revised corporate code that emphasised the need for boards to refresh themselves.

Domino's Pizza Group, which is a franchise of US-based Domino's Pizza Inc, has been struggling to control costs in its international business. It is in the process of exiting four of its loss-making global operations.

Growing Pizza Market

The Italian food format stood third in preference after Indian and Chinese five to six years ago. However, recent studies show that pizza is the biggest and the most profitable segment in the Quick Serve Restaurant (QSR) format.

The Indian pizza market is dominated by Jubilant Food Works and Yum Brands, who own the widely recognisable brands Domino’s and Pizza Hut, respectively. However, other brands such as Sbarro, Papa John’s and Marco’s Pizza are also competing to spread their base in India. Thus, with the increase in the number of players, the market is ripe for investors.

Serving pizza via franchise route

Global and domestic pizza brands in India are expanding their stores through the franchise route throwing many opportunities for entrepreneurs in the country. Be it Domino’s, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s,  Sbarro, Neopolitan Pizza or any other pizza brand, the majority of them are spreading their footprints via a franchise model in India. Domino’s Pizza has Jubilant FoodWorks Limited as it Master Franchisee.

Prospects in smaller cities

The Indian fast food market, which used to concentrate only in the metropolitan cities, has been witnessing a robust growth pan-India over the past few years. Tier II and III cities are the focus of the leading pizza makers due to huge opportunities there.

In the pizza segment, competition is getting intense as franchisors are significantly ramping up their presence across tier-II and tier-III cities of India. There exists a tremendous growth opportunity for franchisors in these areas as an educated middle-class population is becoming more sophisticated with respect to standardised food consumption.