Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Pizza Delivery Companies Prepare for Superbowl Sunday

Like baseball and hot dogs, pizza is forever linked to football _ a fact not lost on some of the nation's biggest pizza chains as they gear up for Super Bowl XLII.

With the big game just around the corner, businesses like Domino's Pizza Inc., Papa John's International Inc. and Pizza Hut are bracing for a flood of orders and huge sales.

Domino's said in a statement that it expects to deliver more than 1.2 million pizzas across the country on Super Bowl Sunday _ a third more than its usual Sunday total. The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based company predicts it will deliver approximately 250,000 pizzas every quarter.

Pizza Hut said most of its locations are historically 60 percent to 70 percent busier the day of the Super Bowl compared with a typical Sunday, with 80 percent of its deliveries and takeout orders occurring before halftime. The company, which is run by Louisville, Ky.-based Yum Brands Inc., receives 2.5 million calls at its 6,200 restaurants on Super Bowl Sunday, making it the busiest day of the year.

Both Domino's and Pizza Hut said pepperoni is the favorite topping for Super Bowl Sunday, with sausage coming in second.

Papa John's, also based in Louisville, predicts selling almost 750,000 pies on game day.

All three companies are preparing for the onslaught of customers by allowing football fans to place advance orders for their pizzas online. The businesses also accept text message ordering.

Sunday's game in Arizona between the New England Patriots and New York Giants is expected to be the most-watched program of 2008, with advertisers paying $2.7 million for a 30-second commercial. Last year's Super Bowl pulled in 93.2 million viewers, slightly down from the Super Bowl's all-time record of 94.1 million viewers set in 1996.

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