Tough times? Eat pizza

The threat of a looming recession may be bad news for most companies, but for those in the take-away pizza business there is a silver lining, according to Dominos CEO Don Meij.

Mr Meij today told shareholders at the pizza giant's annual general meeting in Brisbane the company was on track to meet its 2008-09 profit forecasts.

He said the business would be largely unaffected by the global financial crisis.

"In this business, it's not so much what happens in the economy, it's really our promotions and anything a competitor might do that would have a bigger impact on us," he said following the meeting.

"Pizza is kind of resilient - good or bad times people get home delivered pizzas, it is affordable and meets all those needs." Mr Meij said falling commodity prices and a weak Australian dollar could take some pressure off the company.

He also said Dominos, which currently is about 2,000 staff short, could provide job opportunities as the unemployment rate rises.

"For years I've been telling shareholders that we have been focusing on pick-up because we have found it more difficult to get delivery drivers," he said.

"As unemployment rises, we hope we are there to give jobs to those that need them." However, he said the credit crunch could affect would-be franchisees' ability to get loans - although the company still hopes to open another 40-50 stores across Australia, New Zealand and Europe this year.

"Forty to fifty stores is still a good number but it has been reduced on what we might have done," he said.






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