Their Menu Remained Virtually Unchanged From 1960 to 1989 from 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Domino’s

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Domino’s

Editor
Think you know America’s second-largest pizza chain?

Domino’s®/ best of the 80’s

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Domino’s

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For many of us, Domino’s Pizza was an essential part of our childhood. From being slightly confused by The Noid to counting down that 30-minute window in which they promised our pizza would be delivered, delivery pizza was synonymous with Domino’s. But even if no weekend is complete without a Domino’s delivery, we bet that there are plenty of things you didn’t know about this chain.

The Co-Founder Traded His Share for a Volkswagen Beetle

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When James Monaghan decided to focus on being a mailman instead of a pizza entrepreneur, he traded his half of the business to Tom for an old Volkswagen Beetle that had been used to make deliveries. Tom Monaghan, now 78, sold Domino’s in 1998 to Bain Capital for an estimated $1 billion. 

The 3 Dots in the Logo Represent the First 3 Stores

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The original plan was to add one new dot to the logo for every store that opened, but that idea was quickly abandoned!

They Were Sued by Domino Sugar

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Their names are certainly pretty similar. Domino Sugar owner Amstar sued Domino’s in 1975 for trademark infringement, but a judge ruled in favor of the pizza chain in 1980. 

Their Menu Remained Virtually Unchanged From 1960 to 1989

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When Tom Monaghan decided to expand, he removed sub sandwiches from the original menu, and the lineup of one pizza in two sizes, 11 topping options, and Coca-Cola stayed essentially unchanged right up to the late 1980s. The first new menu addition in decades happened in 1989, when deep-dish pizzas were added to the menu at a cost of $25 million. 

They Once Offered Free Sandwiches to People Named Jared

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In 2008, the chain rolled out four varieties of oven-baked sandwiches in an effort to compete with Subway. They made it pretty clear that pulling some market share away from Subway was the ultimate goal, even going so far as to offer free sandwiches to anyone with the same name as Subway’s former spokesman

Vegan Domino’s Pizza Exists, but Only in Israel

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Want vegan Domino’s? You’ll only find it in Israel. In December 2013, Domino’s locations there rolled out pizza with a vegan crust and a soy-based cheese substitute.  

They Accidentally Gave Away 11,000 Free Pizzas in March 2009

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In December 2008, the company was working on an idea to give away some free pizzas as a marketing initiative, but ended up dropping it entirely before launch. But in March 2009, somebody discovered that the promotion code, “Bailout,” hadn’t been de-activated, and shared it on the Internet. By the time Domino’s realized what was going on the damage had been done, and they were on the hook for 11,000 free pizzas. 

They Dropped Their 30-Minute Guarantee After Too Many Car Accidents

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In 1973, Domino’s guaranteed America that they’d have their pizza within 30 minutes of placing their order or they’d get it for free (by the mid-1980s, it was reduced to a three-dollar discount). In 1992, however, Domino’s was forced to pay $2.8 million to the family of a woman who had been killed by a Domino’s driver rushing to make a delivery, and after paying $15 million the following year to a woman injured by a delivery driver who ran a red light, the company dropped the guarantee entirely. Five countries still offer 30-minute delivery, however: Colombia, India, Vietnam, Mexico, and Turkey. 

The Noid’s Decline Was Sad and Bizarre

Domino’s®/ best of the 80’s

Remember the Noid? The rabbit-eared cartoon character used in Domino’s commercials in the 1980s was meant to represent the frustrations of pizza delivery (you get “annoyed” – get it?), and it even got its own Nintendo game in 1990. The Noid met a sad end, however. In 1989 a mentally ill man named Kenneth Lamar Noid, who thought that the ad campaign was a personal attack, held two employees of an Atlanta Domino’s hostage for more than five hours. He surrendered without incident, but after he committed suicide in 1995 the campaign was ended once and for all. 

The United Kingdom Is Domino’s Largest International Market

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With more than 860 locations, the U.K. (made up of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) has more Domino’s outposts than any country aside from the United States. One out of every eight U.K. residents has the Domino’s mobile app, and 75 million pizzas were delivered there in 2014, according to The Telegraph