Domino’s future has nothing to do with pizza
THERE are big things coming from Australia's largest pizza chain but, unusually, they have almost nothing to do with pizza.
Domino's came to Australia way back in 1983 and after almost 35 years of pretty much sticking to the pizza area of the fast food market, it's decided to come for everyone else.
Whether it's Subway, McDonald's or your favourite cafe, Domino's is looking for a bigger chunk of the $19 billion fast food market - and it's claiming to have the ideas to back it up.
Speaking to news.com.au, Domino's chief digital officer Michael Gillespie said the company "isn't just about pizzas" anymore.
"Our menu is always evolving and that's super exciting," he added.
Domino's, which controls 4.9 per cent of the market, is looking to branch out into everything from sandwiches to ice cream.
Here's what's coming.
Ice creameries and fast food chains like McDonald's and Hungry Jacks have dominated the sundae game but if you didn't get the hint from Domino's thickshakes, the pizza chain is interested in the ice cream market.
The company already has "an incredible base ice cream" according to chief marketing officer Allan Collins, meaning there's plenty of opportunity. Testing is starting by the end of the year.
"We're looking at sundaes, ice cream sandwiches, even those crazy shakes could work for us. We already have the desserts to complement an idea like that," he said.
When you think of sandwich chains in Australia, the first thing that comes to mind is Subway.
Subway is a giant in the Australian fast food market with 1400 stores but if anyone understands the power of social media it's Domino's. The company realised long ago that garlic bread is very on trend at the moment, so why not bank on that?
Domino's already offers a bolognese and cheesy herb and garlic variation of the baguette, with plans to expand into the sandwich world even more.
A failed attempt at an oven-baked sandwich range five years ago, means the company will be more careful. Mr Collins insisted, however, that just because the gamble failed five years ago did not mean it would not work now.
"We're trying to enter the lunch market more and while we still do good lunch sales with our value range pizzas and chicken options, more menu items would help that," he said.
The head chef of Domino's "Love Lab", where the company creates all of its ideas, is always trying to invent new menu items, according to Mr Collins.
"We're always looking at ways we can do things with bread. Whether it's injecting it with flavours, literally, putting spices on top or trying different butters," he said.
Aussies love a good breakfast. We're famous for our smashed avo on toast and world-class coffee and it's another market that Domino's wants a piece of.
Mr Collins cited the company's reputation as a "fresh baked business" that would make entering the breakfast game a breeze.
"We're hoping customers give us the credibility and have faith in us but breakfast is really important to us. We're looking at bacon and egg products and croissants," he said.
"We have stores that are just sitting there. They have all this capacity so why wouldn't we use it? There's so many opportunities and we want to say to customers, 'We can supply you with breakfast, lunch and dinner,'" he said.
Domino's trialled a breakfast pizza in 2014 which came with rasher bacon, scrambled eggs and a smoky barbecue sauce.
"If our customers wake up feeling like bacon and eggs we want to be able to give them bacon and eggs!" the company said through its public relations team at the time.
"If they come home late at night and feel like bacon and eggs we want to be able to deliver them bacon and eggs - that's the beauty of the all-day Aussie brekky pizza!"
Domino's announced in June it was entering the thickshake game - telling news.com.au at the time it was looking to steal a 10 per cent share of the $700 million a year thickshake and smoothie market.
The company said the shakes, billed as "the thickest shake guaranteed or your money back", are made with "real ice cream, rather than soft serve, which is used by our competitors".
And clearly the company is looking for a way for their customers to embrace other beverages, a week after it announced it was dropping Coca-Cola branded drinks for Pepsi-branded beverages.
Domino's describes itself as "the delivery experts" offering a 20-minute guarantee in most cities and even trialling a 10-minute guarantee in one Queensland town and, according to Mr Collins, that reputation is something they can bank on.
"Domino's is the largest delivery network in Australia and that's a beautiful thing. You can have food at your desk in 10-15 minutes and we want to capitalise on that," he said.
Companies like Uber Eats and Deliveroo have already delved into the delivery world with Domino's hinting there might even be room for them to dive in and potentially even deliver food for competitors.
"We're definitely open to that but at the moment it's most about what other businesses would want to leverage our 'delivery expertise'," he said.
The fast food chain is also looking to expand into the drone industry for delivery, already partnering with Flirtey, a drone company in New Zealand, to help them deliver pizzas.
"Think about putting a bottle in a car and how much it moves around, imagine adding that to a drone. It takes time," Mr Gillespie said.