NOBLE ROMAN’S (NROM) UNVEILS NEW PROTOTYPE, FOR THE TIMES WE ARE IN!
Noble Roman’s (NROM) will report their second quarter results in early August, but they have already described (and we have previously reported) that the sales at the four existing company operated locations (before the fifth, in Brownsburg, IN, that opened in late March, to record sales well over $50k/week) had recovered well from the extreme declines in late March and April. We will presumably learn more as part of the Q2 report.
In the meantime, NROM reported last night that they have signed a lease for the sixth company location, in Greenwood, IN, just south of Indianapolis, which will open by the end of the third quarter.
The new prototype, to be used in Greenwood, is responsive, as NROM management views it, to evolving customer service preferences. The physical box is 3,700 square feet, down from 4,200, still able to seat 160, including a beer and wine bar that seats ten. The on-premise dining experience can therefore be maintained for customers so inclined. Additionally, as Scott Mobley, President, describes it: The prototype, “incorporates new equipment and work-flows in the kitchen that will allow faster production speeds during heavy online ordering and peak hours. Our dining room has been restructured to be much more space efficient and will allow switching between various service systems based on needs arising from events such as Covid-19. It will also feature a separate entrance for our curb-side Pizza Valets designed to enhance the functionality of that important service. Finally, we will have a large outdoor patio seating area, which will be fun, as well as advantageous during Covid-19 restrictions”.
The Company also reported that the first franchisee of the Noble Roman’s Craft Pizza and Pub, with their initial successful location in Lafayette, IN, now open a little over a year, is under construction with a second location, based in Kokomo, IN.
While NROM is one of the smallest publicly held restaurant companies, and the “micro-cap” stock could be a worthwhile investment over time from these levels, we believe the direction they are moving in terms of the physical plant and its ability to service the evolving restaurant customer is worth broader attention.