dominics finds a new home

Dominic’s of New York food eateries are making a transition into the convenience store market, an unlikely move, thought John Felico, president of FoodNet Franchising, the Henrico County-based owner of Dominic’s.

“It just wasn’t the type of environment I saw us being in,” said Felico, This is because the typical Dominic’s formats are kiosk carts in front of Lowe’s home-improvement stores, although the company does operate a couple of cafs inside office buildings and at the Pentagon where it serves about 500 customers in 1 hours at lunchtime.

Felico changed his mind after getting a call from Steven Uphoff, owner of the Uppy’s Convenience Stores chain, according to the Times Dispatch. Uphoff was building a new store in western Henrico County, Va. and wanted Dominic’s as the food operator, thus opening the first Dominic’s of New York Pronto Caf inside Uppy’s “On the Run” Exxon station.

“It is hard to take your concept that people are used to seeing in a specific venue and

convert it to another venue and tweak it, but that’s what we are doing. It is working,” Felico told the newspaper.

Uphoff is also pleased with having Dominic’s inside one of his stores.

“They are such a high-quality branded product and they care about the value they present to the customer.”

The Pronto Caf sells paninis, wrap sandwiches, hamburgers and wings in addition to its signature Italian-sausage sandwiches. It also has made-to-order salads as well as breakfast items.

If the convenience store concept works, Felico and Uphoff plan on putting more Pronto Cafs inside new and existing Uppy’s. Dominic’s has an arrangement to operate only within Uppy’s Virginia locations.

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