Tucson, AZ

Major Pizza Chain Taking Over Dozens of Local Restaurants

Greyson F

Grab a slice of chain pizza today.Amirali Mirhashemian/Unsplash

There’s just something about heading off to a pizza joint as a kid that’s magical. You could care less about the quality of the slice. As long as there is crust and cheese and sauce, it’s all good. Add in some games and nothing else can compete. It’s what has made chains like Chuck E. Cheese so popular for decades. And now, here in Tucson, a major pizza chain is about to move in and take over nearly a dozen franchise locations spread around the city. 

Peter Piper Pizza can be found around Tucson and, in fact, throughout Arizona. In fact, Peter Piper Pizza has its headquarters in Phoenix. For years, the restaurant offered out franchises to interesting parties looking to invest in the games and pizza combo craze. However, now the chain is looking to dump franchise owners and take over the established locations. 

That is why every single Peter Piper Pizza location here in town will lose their franchise tags and will be taken over by the company itself, beginning the first of November. The takeover will account for over one-third of all Peter Piper Pizza restaurants currently in existence (there are over120 restaurants located in the United States and Mexico). 

The taking over of these Tucson locations (as well as the other locations in Arizona), likely represents an evolution in the kid-friendly approach. This isn’t to say the restaurants will lose their games though, as the parent company of Peter Piper is CEC Entertainment, an LLC located in Irving, Texas, and the owner of Chuck E. Cheese. There may be a merging of the two brands, or even an entirely different approach. 

Fast-casual pizza restaurants have proven increasingly popular throughout the United States over the last several years. Additionally, with the forced shutdown of the pandemic, fewer families are taking their children out to indoor restaurants to play and mingle with other children. All of this has hindered the bottom line of Peter Piper Pizza here in Tucson.

What does prove to be the most interesting part of the Peter Piper takeover is that CEC Entertainment filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in January in order to wipe clean $705 million worth of debt. And now, with the slate clean, the LLC is taking over more than 40 restaurants. 

There is no word yet as to what exactly will happen to the Peter Piper Pizza restaurants here in Tucson, whether they will remain as-is, be sold off, or be completely reinvented, but chances are, with a company fresh out of bankruptcy, chances are there will be some immediate changes in the works. If you are a fan of PPP, make sure to keep your eyes open for alterations to the restaurants in the coming months. 

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