Franchise owners in the locally based Rapid Fired Pizza and Hot Head Burritos chains are selling more than just pizzas and burritos. They’re selling small slices of their company, which they will use to expand rapidly across Ohio and other states.
And unlike most such stock-like equity offerings, investors can get a piece of the action for as little as $100 — and they’ll get some tasty perks, too.
Tasty Equity, a Bowling Green, Ohio-based franchise owner-operator of Hot Head and Rapid Fired, last month launched a “Regulation A+” equity offering designed to raise money to build new stores across the country. Launched in Kettering in 2007, Hot Head Burritos serves its fast-casual Mexican fare in more than 70 company-owned and franchise locations in eight states. Rapid Fired Pizza opened its first location in Washington Twp. in 2015 and now operates more than 30 restaurants in five states.
“This is an investment opportunity that gives fans, friends, guests, investors and anyone in the general public, for the first time in history, ability to invest in Tasty Equity to get a bite-size piece of ownership in two Hot Head Burritos restaurants plus two Rapid Fired Pizza restaurants, and future restaurants Tasty Equity plans to build in Ohio and beyond,” the company said in a release.
The company operates four existing restaurants: Rapid Fired Pizza shops in Lima and Bowling Green, and Hot Head locations in Holland, Ohio and in Perrysburg.
Tasty Equity was founded by Peter and Chris Wiley, brothers of Hot Head Burritos and Rapid Fired Pizza co-founder Ray Wiley. The Wiley brothers grew up in the restaurant-franchise business with their father, who was one of the first Pizza Hut team members to go on to help franchisees and other brands develop hundreds of restaurants, the brothers said.
Chris Wiley said in an interview that the company has multiple agreements with area developers that could lead to dozens more locations throughout the country, including, potentially, Washington State, California, Alabama and Indiana, among others.
Not all of those locations will look like the existing Hot Head and Rapid Fired restaurants we are accustomed to seeing in the Miami Valley, even the handful of Rapid Fired and Hot Head “Cantina” restaurants that have self-pour systems for craft beers, wines and cocktails. Plans call for some of the locations to be a full taproom concept, with 60 self-pour taps and seating for 100, Chris Wiley said. “We have two on the drawing board now,” he said.
The equity offering is fully registered with the SEC, and its focus is on smaller investors, Wiley said. Traditionally, becoming a restaurant chain franchise owner can take hundreds of thousands of dollars up front.
“We want to enable up-and-coming operators who don’t have the equity to do that,” Wiley said.
An initial soft-launch of the stock offering generated considerable interest, Chris Wiley said, although he is prohibited from disclosing amounts committed to date.
Wiley said early-stage investments by the general public into private companies such as Tasty Equity were not legal for consumers until 2015, “and used to be reserved only for the rich and well-connected,” according to a Tasty Equity release.
“Things have changed,” the release said.
Several investment levels are available with increasing levels of perks. They start with a lifetime discount for both brands at participating Hot Head and Rapid Fired restaurants, and include having investors’ names displayed on the restaurant walls, selecting a “Beer of the Month,” and exclusive invitations to grand openings, investor parties and VIP night events at participating locations, the Tasty Equity owners said.
“We want all of our loyal fans to own a piece of the pie, share the love of our brands with their friends, and pride of ownership in all the restaurants we plan to build,” Tasty Equity co-founder Pete Wiley said in a release.
For more information, go to InvestinTastyEquity.com.