Persona to open Columbia pizzeria in June

Persona Wood Fired Pizzeria recently said that it has signed a development agreement to bring its create-your-own-pizza concept to the Southeast, with restaurants planned for South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia.

“The next big slice of the fast-casual restaurant market is coming from an Italian-American staple – pizza – and we believe the Southeastern United States is an underserved market that will welcome our product line with open arms,” Persona CEO Joe Baumel said. “We're confident that everything from our speed of service to the quality of the product will make our pizzerias a welcome addition in the region."

Persona offers a thin-crust pizza inspired by world-renowned pizzerias in Naples, Italy, where pizzas are made by hand and designed as they are ordered by the customer. Similar to eateries such as Moe’s Southwest Grill or Subway, diners can select from a variety of toppings and see their customized pizzas crafted right in front of their eyes.

Simpli.Fresh.Concepts, LLC, the franchisee for the Southeastern locations, plans to open the first restaurant in Columbia, South Carolina, in June.

“During the last several years, a band of start-ups have been vying to become the leader in fast-casual pizza, but none of them have the quality and authenticity of Persona,” Simpli.Fresh.Concepts co-founder Johnnie Davis said. Davis also said the company researched several other pizza franchises before selecting Persona. “There is no doubt that Persona is well on its way to becoming the premier player in the segment, and we couldn’t be more excited about being part of the company’s growth.”

For additional information on Persona franchise opportunities, visit

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