Bloomberg published a profile over the weekend of Fyodor Ovchinnikov, founder of Dodo Pizza. If you haven’t heard of Dodo Pizza yet, you will very soon: It’s the world’s fastest-growing pizza chain. In the past eight years, Ovchinnikov has opened 457 locations in Russia and 69 more in 12 other countries, including China and Nigeria, as well as three locations in the United States (Memphis and Oxford, Mississippi). In Russia, it’s more popular than Pizza Hut, Domino’s, and Papa John’s. Dodo has figured out how to deliver hot pizza in the Arctic (“where,” the article points out, “blocks of cheese arrive on nuclear icebreakers”). It refuses to use third-party delivery apps. Back in 2014, it delivered the first pizza by drone (in the far northern Russian city of Syktyvkar) though Ovchinnikov admits now that was mostly a publicity stunt.
One of the reasons for Bloomberg’s interest in Dodo, besides its rapid growth and impending world domination, is its business model: It keeps its proprietary software in the cloud so anyone, anywhere, at any time can view information about cash flow, inventory, and service times. Customers can also watch their pizzas being made in the kitchen. (Is this more exciting than the Domino’s Pizza Tracker?) For a businessperson, this is presumably more interesting than pedestrian details about how Dodo Pizza tastes. If anyone in Memphis or Oxford has tried it, please let us know.