Pizza Thanh Long: more than a pizza

16:39 | 27/02/2020
Pizza Thanh Long, a novel product made from Thanh Long (Blue Dragon fruit) of the local Pizza Home chain, is the new fever in Hanoi these days. Hoang Tung, CEO of Pizza Home, has no intention of easing off the gas, with works already underway to launch Pizza Dua Hau (watermelon pizza) and other fresh fruit pizzas purely made from local agricultural materials.
pizza thanh long more than a pizza
Pizza Thanh Long is being offered at half price than common products to bolster sale

Business based on social responsibility

Hanoi-based pizzeria chain Pizza Home has seized the limelight with its unusual new pizza recipe that brings the mouthwatering toppings on a pinkish dough – made by mixing Thanh Long (dragon fruit) directly into the dough.

Both customers visiting the pizzerias to grab a quick snack and those ordering online have been growing at a tremendous pace.

Pizza Home CEO Hoang Tung shared that their inspiration for Pizza Thanh Long came from creative genius Kao Sieu Luc, who came up with Thanh Long bread to help farmers bolster sales in a bid to alleviate the implications of COVID-19.

“Blending Thanh Long into the dough will add a natural sweet taste and eye-catching colour,” said Tung, adding that the team wants to lend a helping hand to farmers in selling their produce, such as Blue Dragon fruit and watermelon, that have lost important export markets since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Tung also decided to sell the pizza at half price for only VND55,000 ($2.4) to boost sales.

“Sometimes profit is not the ultimate goal for businesses when they launch a new product. The top mission of Pizza Thanh Long is exercising corporate social responsibility, lending support to farmers," Tung shared. "This product is also the renewal of our brand, attesting to the creativity of our team at Pizza Home,” Tung shared.

After Pizza Thanh Long, the Pizza Home team has been experimenting to blend watermelon into the dough, which will be launched within a few days – only to be followed by other novel products using fresh local agricultural produce to create a stable output market for local farmers.

A journey of passion and constant invention

After graduating from two universities simultaneously in 2003 – Hanoi Foreign Language College and the Faculty of Tourism of University of Social Sciences and Humanity under Hanoi National University – Hoang Tung became a tour guide for a renowned travel firm.

After Pizza Thanh Long, the Pizza Home team has been experimenting to blend watermelon into the dough, which will be launched within a few days – only to be followed by other novel products using fresh local agricultural produce to create a stable output market for local farmers.

On account of his job, Tung could visit many locations and taste authentic local food and developed a passion for introducing distinct local delicacies to more and more people.

In early 2007, using funds contributed by several shareholders, Tung opened Viet Kitchen at 24C Ba Trieu Street, Hanoi. The conceptual base for the project was to serve truly authentic Vietnamese dishes to show the unembellished and untamed side of Vietnamese cuisine to patrons.

Within a single year, Viet Kitchen succeeded in establishing co-operative ties with more than 200 travel firms and built up stable customer sources.

In 2008, Tung decided to strike out on his own. He and another co-founder of Viet Kitchen opened Mien Dong Duong Co., Ltd. (Indochina Travelland – ITL).

When the company has managed to reach stable operations, Tung has shifted into the F&B business with coffee, before establishing the Pizza Home chain.

Explaining why pizza, Tung recalled that when he was still a tour guide, he was fascinated by the flavour of this Italian dish, and his favourite food was the obvious choice for trying his wings in the F&B business.

“There are many pizza brands in the market, but most belong to foreign firms. This has inspired me to open a pizza brand owned by Vietnamese,” Tung said proudly.

With the idea, Tung had quickly found the perfect companion who was the chief at a renowned hotel in Hanoi. Pizza Home came into being in 2014, with his friend in charge of production and Tung taking care of operation management.

“Initially, we made a couple of decisions that were off the mark. For example, building a menu with many dishes scaled up management pressure. Besides, as a new brand, we only had a few customers,” Tung recalled.

With their constant efforts, combined with diverse marketing campaigns like “Buy one, get one free” or “Giant pizza challenge”, Tung and his team have gradually expanded their customer base, with increasingly buoyant business.

Pizza Home currently has five branches in Hanoi, all managing stable growth. Tung said he is mulling over breaking into the southern market in the not-so-distant future.

“The food industry still has ample space. I wish to build a strong brand, creating more jobs for locals and contributing to society,” he said.

By Phuong Thuy

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