Domino's pizza logo old and new

Many people get their pizza from Domino’s Pizza. More and more every year. We’re not fans but we admit to having eaten it.

Cary’s best Domino’s memory: working an overnight at Covenant Hospital in Lubbock, Texas when one of his buddies suggested ordering Domino’s. Hungry and realizing that there weren’t too many pizzerias in Lubbock, open at 2 am or otherwise, he said, “Okay, on two conditions – one, you don’t tell anyone I ate this – and two, you’re buying.” Thanks, Fernando.  Now we’re telling.

Anyway, it doesn’t matter what we think – many of you like Domino’s. Here’s their story:

How Domino’s Pizza began:

On December 9, 1960, the Monaghan brothers, Tom and James, bought  DomiNick’s, a pizza restaurant owned by Dominick DeVarti, at 507 Cross Street (now 301 West Cross Street) in Ypsilanti, Michigan.  Depending on which part of the Domino’s site you look at, they paid either $500 or $900. It looks like the down payment was $500 and they borrowed $900 to complete the purchase.

James wasn’t ready to give up his full-time job with the Postal Service. Within eight months he traded his half of the business to Tom for the Volkswagen Beetle they used for pizza deliveries. I can’t even.domino's pizza was dominick's and here's the infamous beetle

By 1965, Tom Monaghan had three pizzerias, all in Washtenaw County. He couldn’t call them all DomiNick’s, since Mr. DeVarti forbade him from using the name (he had other restaurants with his own name). I’ve also gotten the impression that Dominick didn’t particularly like Tom, based on a 1987 interview in the Michigan Daily.

One day, an employee, Jim Kennedy, returned from a pizza delivery and suggested the name “Domino’s.” Monaghan officially renamed the business Domino’s Pizza, Inc. in 1965.  The three dots in the Domino’s logo represent the first three stores.

The first franchised Domino’s opened in Ypsilanti MI in 1967. For those of you who are unfamiliar with southeastern Michigan, Ypsilanti is the location of Eastern Michigan University and is only one town east of Ann Arbor, the home of the University of Michigan. College students eat a lot of pizza.

The Old 30-Minute Guarantee

Domino’s Pizza used to offer a guarantee (which started in 1973) that customers would receive their pizzas within 30 minutes of placing an order or they would receive the pizzas free. That dropped to $3 off in the mid-1980s. After a couple of multi million dollar lawsuits in 1992 and 1993, Domino’s dropped the guarantee because of the “public perception of reckless driving and irresponsibility”. They still have the 30-minute guarantee in a number of foreign markets.

The Domino Farms complex opened in 2005. It’s pretty cool.

Interesting Domino’s facts:

  • Domino’s is 93% franchise-owned.
  • Domino’s delivers more than 2 million pizzas a day worldwide.
  • You can get vegan Domino’s pizza, but only in Israel.

Know anything else about Domino’s? Share with us in a comment below!

We got some of the information on this page from the blog Today I Found Out

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