DiPasqua Family Buzz

1977 Subway's Founder Fred Deluca talks about Orlando Florida's very 1st Franchisees Peter & Lucy DiPasqua
1977 Subway’s Founder Fred Deluca talks about Orlando Florida’s very 1st Franchisees Peter & Lucy DiPasqua

Subway Franchise Gives Orlando Family `Phenomenal’ Run

 Subway Franchise Gives Orlando Family `Phenomenal’ Run.

May 6, 2002|By Jerry W. Jackson, Sentinel Staff Writer

“When Pete DiPasqua Jr. made his first Subway sandwich working behind the counter in Connecticut in 1976, there were 29 outlets worldwide.

Now there are more than 16,000; the chain surpassed McDonald’s in total U.S. restaurant units last year.

“It’s been a phenomenal run,” and the pace is accelerating, said DiPasqua, 41, chief executive officer of the largest Subway franchise operator in Central Florida, DiPasqua Enterprises Inc. of Orlando.

DiPasqua family members began moving from Connecticut to Orlando in 1977, opening their first Subway outlet on East Colonial Drive that year. They’ve been expanding the business every year since.

DiPasqua Enterprises now owns 58 of the 195 Subway restaurants in an 11-county Central Florida territory. Each outlet employs about 10 people.

The DiPasquas also control franchisee rights in the 11-county territory, through Orlando-based Subway Development Corp., which is run by Pete DiPasqua’s two older brothers, Curtis and Michael, who jointly own 16 Subway outlets of their own.

Three sisters also are involved: Gayle DiPasqua Pryor and her husband, John, own three Subways and are building a fourth, at the West Oaks Mall in Ocoee; Donna DiPasqua owns two Subways in Ocala; and Lynn DiPasqua Ganssle and her husband, Jeff, are partners in DiPasqua Enterprises, along with the family matriarch, Lucy DiPasqua.

Pete DiPasqua said he attributes much of the privately held chain’s recent sales growth and expansion to the surprising success of the Jared Fogle commercials. Fogle is the former Indiana University student who lost 245 pounds in part by eating two low-fat Subway subs a day, as part of a low-calorie diet.

His story was told in a student newspaper article; Subway, based in Milford, Conn., heard about it and hired him for a now famous series of commercials that launched in early 1999. A new round of “Jared” commercials recently began airing.

Pete DiPasqua said the commercials have had a “huge impact” on sales. “It’s been the most dramatic in my history with the company,” DiPasqua said.

The average annual sales per outlet surged 13 percent to $321,516 in 2001, according to a Subway Corporate Representative.

McDonald’s outlets still gross far more, though, at more than $1.6 million per unit, so Subway’s systemwide sales total of $5.17 billion is well-below McDonald’s systemwide sales of more than $40 billion.

Still, that double-digit sales increase for Subway last year came at a time when much of the industry struggled, including McDonald’s.

Subway does not report profit or loss, as does McDonald’s, and all of the 16,360 Subway outlets worldwide are owned by independent operators, such as the DiPasquas.  Analysts say that means Subway is not likely to ever have the cohesion and clout of McDonald’s, so the fact that Subway edged out McDonald’s in 2001 in U.S. units — 13,247 to 13,099 — is seen as more symbolic than substantive.”

Still, for Subway operators it is a symbolism they are savoring like a turkey sub with extra mayo.

Pete DiPasqua said the family’s Central Florida Subways gross about 25 percent more than the national average for the chain. One reason, he said, is that Central Florida operators pump extra advertising into the local market.

Another reason is the Orlando company’s willingness to pay more for better sites, such as a corner spot in a strip center. “We’re willing to pay bigger rent, and in fact we seek out those better locations. So far, it’s paid off,” DiPasqua said.

Family-owned subway franchise prospering like parent company

May 14, 2002

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Maitland’s Lucy DiPasqua built chain of Subway franchises with family


April 8, 2006|By Joseph Rassel, Sentinel Staff Writer

Lucy DiPasqua seemed to excel at whatever came her way.

From raising six children on a shoestring budget to being co-owner of a small restaurant for a fledgling chain to being the leader of a large chain of restaurants, she would adapt to whatever role she was in.

DiPasqua, of Maitland, founder of DiPasqua Enterprises Inc., one of the first and largest franchisee groups in the Subway Restaurant system, died Sunday of complications from pneumonia.

She was 79.

A local business pioneer, DiPasqua served as president of DEI, a conglomerate of 79 local Subway restaurants, from 1985 until 2004.

DiPasqua entered the restaurant business with her husband, Peter, who was a barber by trade. Living in Connecticut, the couple were in their 50s and concerned about how they would fund their retirement years, said her son Curtis DiPasqua of Winter Park.

“In 1976, they bought a Subway franchise license. In 1977, they moved to Orlando and opened their first restaurant on East Colonial Drive between Bumby and Fern Creek,” Curtis DiPasqua said. “They started with just enough money to put a down payment on that store. She was active in everything from serving the sandwiches to cleaning the store to training the help.”

By 1980, the DiPasquas had five stores open in the Orlando area, and 10 years later the company had 20. Currently, DEI operates restaurants in Orange, Seminole, Osceola and Marion counties, with sales in excess of $34 million.

“She set the stage for it by the way she worked and treated people. It became the culture of the company. How we treat the people, how hard we work, all help make the fabric of the company,” said her son Peter DiPasqua, now the president of DEI. “We’re still the second-largest independently owned [Subway] franchise group in the nation.”

In 1986, after she and her husband divorced, DiPasqua took over the restaurant business.

“She was involved right from the beginning with my dad and really had an active role from Day One,” Peter DiPasqua said. “I think when she ended up in charge of the business, she did a lot of the same things she did when she raised her kids. She nurtured and she really put people first.”

Her reputation grew as she served for 12 years on the National Subway Advertising Board of Directors, including one term as chairperson. She also served terms as president and chair of the Florida Restaurant Association’s local chapter and the North American Association of Subway Franchises Board of Directors. DiPasqua was honored by Who’s Who of American Women in 1991-1994 and International Who’s Who of Professionals in 1994.

“One of her most wonderful qualities was she always had constructive ideas and always wanted to better the system,” said Cindy Eadie, assistant vice president of Subway Corp. in Milford, Conn. “Over time, she established a reputation for her wisdom and calm level-headed thinking. She was a mentor to many franchisees.”

Though she appreciated all her business success, the thing that DiPasqua was most happy with was that the franchise kept her family close.

“She really enjoyed the fact that she was working with her children. All six kids are involved with Subway franchises in some respect,” Peter DiPasqua said. “We’re a really strong, close Italian family and we’re kind of drawn together, and the business really acted as the glue.”

Survivors also include daughters Gayle Pryor of Ocoee, Donna DiPasqua of Ocala, Lynn Ganssle of Maitland; son Michael DiPasqua of Sorrento; sister Jenny Szatmary of Sunrise; brother Robert Nardi of Norwalk, Conn.; 16 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Baldwin-Fairchild Funeral Home, East Altamonte Chapel, Altamonte Springs, is handling arrangements.

Franchise Times
Quick Service Stories
by Jonathan Maze

Business is all in the family for these Subway operators

Their motto: “Nothing comes between us,” says one of six siblings in the DiPasqua clan of Florida. All are involved with the Subway brand, led by their late father, Pete Sr., who got a tip while behind his barber’s chair.  

If you’re buying a sandwich in a Central Florida Subway restaurant, chances are good it is connected in some way to the DiPasqua family of three brothers and three sisters, the children of pioneering Subway franchisee Pete DiPasqua Sr.

Two brothers own the area-development company that oversees the area, plus operate 40 stores of their own. Another brother and his brother-in-law operate 106 stores in the area. One sister has eight restaurants. Another sister has four. Their involvement in the brand dates back 35 years.

And it all started with a haircut.

Top 10 QSR Chains

DiPasqua Sr. was a barber in the mid-1970s when a customer came in for a haircut and mentioned in passing a burgeoning chain called Subway, started a decade earlier in Connecticut by a 17-year-old kid named Fred DeLuca. The chain had a handful of locations at the time, including one near Pete Sr.’s barbershop. The family thought that was the only location.

Nope. Milford, Connecticut-based Subway was a franchise, and a license at the time cost $500. “Which was in our price range,” said Pete DiPasqua Jr., who as the youngest of the six kids still worked with his father in the barbershop.

Pete Sr. drove to Subway headquarters, where he met Fred DeLuca, and they hit it off—both were Connecticut natives, after all. And then DeLuca mentioned the one thing that would get Pete Sr. really interested: One of the two areas ripe for growth was Orlando, Florida.

Pete DiPasqua was so enamored with Orlando that, over the years, he tried three times to move there. Twice he tried, and failed, to open barbershops there, before moving back to Connecticut. Yet he never lost his desire to relocate to Florida’s sunny warmth. “I’m a Miami Dolphins fan because every time they were playing a home game, my father would gather the six kids around the TV and we would have to watch the weather,” Pete Jr. said.

His father sent Pete Jr. to work as a closer for the local Subway, to get a real idea of what a restaurant was like, and then he scraped together the $20,000 it would cost to open a unit in an old Orlando motorcycle shop.

The opening costs, however, ended up being higher than estimated. So some of the siblings invested their savings in the business. The cost of the first unit reached $28,000. But when they ran out of money, they simply opened the first restaurant. It had no tables or chairs and the workers didn’t have uniforms.

Neither issue would keep customers away. “We were blessed,” Pete Jr. said. “The first store was amazingly busy. We never opened a store like that until maybe our 15th. If we had opened our second or third store first, we’d probably be in Connecticut right now.”

Slow migration

Donna DiPasqua moved to Orlando to open the family’s first store, but the rest of the family was scattered. Mike, a renowned jazz drummer, was in Europe. Curt  was in college at Syracuse. The rest were in Connecticut.

But the DiPasquas have what Curt calls a “close-knit, Italian family.” And, one-by-one, they all moved to Orlando to join the family business, usually after their father convinced them about the opportunity. “He was probably the biggest instigator in getting everybody to come down,” said Curt, the middle brother who operates Subway Development Corp. of Central Florida with older brother Mike. “We were a close family in Connecticut and came here and are now a close family in Florida.”

“We were each other’s best friends,” said Gayle DiPasqua Pryor, who moved down to Orlando in 1980 and started working in a store as a “sandwich artist” before moving up in the business. She and her husband ultimately bought their own restaurant, and they now operate eight Subway locations near Orlando.

Most family members started out at the bottom, working their way up in the business. That included mom, Lucy, who loved working behind the counter, Pryor said. “They raised us to work really hard,” Pryor said. “Even if we never got involved with Subway, we’d all be successful because we knew how to work hard.”

Family Rules

The business was disorganized in the early days, but Pete Sr. opened stores aggressively, and the family won the development rights for Central Florida in 1980. Business was going well. Subway as a franchise had been hitting its stride and growth was picking up.

And then, in 1984, Pete Sr. and Lucy divorced. The businesses were split in two, with Lucy taking the restaurants, and Pete Sr. taking the development corporation. Curt joined his father as the development agent, and Mike joined them in 1987. Lynn DiPasqua, who met her husband, Jeff Ganssle, at one of the company’s first stores, took the restaurants, DiPasqua Enterprises, with Peter Jr. Jeff is the company’s chief operating officer. Donna, like her sister Gayle, went off on her own and now owns four restaurants with her husband.

“It was difficult,” Curt said. “They’d been married for over 30 years. The business was intermingled. But once they divorced and unwound the business and created two separate businesses, we were able to focus again on getting our jobs done. It was probably healthy to separate the businesses.”

Avoiding pitfalls

Multi-generation businesses are becoming more common in legacy brands such as Subway, said Don Fertman, the chain’s chief development officer, who knew the elder DiPasqua dating back to the early 1980s.

“We’ve been at this since 1965,” Fertman said. “But the acceleration in development really started taking place 20 years later. From 1985 on, an awful lot of people joined the chain. And now they’re passing it on to their kids.” Subway now runs seminars at its franchisee meetings to encourage family involvement in franchises.

There are pitfalls to working with family members. Many family-run businesses dissolve or get sold in a divorce. And they frequently don’t survive the transition from one generation to the next. This makes the DiPasqua family a good example—they’ve survived both.

Still, it can be difficult working together, especially given the makeup of their operations. Because they’re franchisees and a development agent in the same area, they talk to one another about business almost daily. And Curt and Mike, as development agents, act as the master franchisor to Pete Jr., Jeff, Lynn, Donna and Gayle. This can lead to some natural franchisor-franchisee tension that can be intensified with family emotions.

Their strategy: Don’t make the business too personal. “Nothing comes between us,” Pete Jr. said. “We vigorously debate things at meetings, and then go and have a glass of wine together.”

However, at every Christmas as the family settles in for a traditional Italian seven-course meal at Pryor’s house, the adult table rarely focuses much on work. Instead they talk of sending kids to college or about politics or home issues or about wine. “We’ve matured,” Curt said. Just in time for the third generation to join.

Update by Jennifer M Gifford exert via DiPasqua Enterprises website…

 August 12, 2015.

Our History, Our Future…

The Beginning  (in our own words)

DEI’s co-founders, Peter Sr. and Lucy DiPasqua, were living in the small town of Brookfield, Connecticut. At the time, Peter Sr. was a barber and employed his youngest son, Peter Jr. Through a conversation with one of his customers, he learned about a local sandwich shop franchise called SUBWAY. His interest peeked even more when the customer indicated that the initial investment was around $20,000 and that the potential seemed unlimited. Because Subway’s home office was close by, Peter Sr. decided to visit and meet Fred DeLuca, Subway’s President and Co-founder. They immediately hit it off. He then sent Pete Jr to the local Subway restaurant to get a job and a better understanding of store operations.

With plans to expand nationwide, SUBWAY seemed to be the perfect fit, so they purchased their first franchise. They invested their life-savings of $20,000 and along with $2,000 from Pete Jr., opened their first location on East Colonial Drive in Orlando, FL in April of 1977. Once they felt they understood the business, plans were put in place to open more locations and they became SUBWAY’s first multi-unit franchisee.

Today’s present owners, Peter DiPasqua Jr., his sister Lynn and her husband, Jeff Ganssle, managed the first three restaurants enabling Peter Sr. and Lucy to focus on growth. By the beginning of 1980, the DiPasqua group had five locations open.

Growth and Leadership

In 1986, Lucy DiPasqua assumed the title of President and Peter Jr. was promoted to CEO. At that time, there were 12 locations in operation. Throughout the eighties and nineties, SUBWAY experienced explosive growth and DEI kept pace as well. By 1990, the company had 20 locations open and then catapulted to 30 restaurants in 11 months time. Jeff Ganssle was promoted that year to Director of Operations. In 2005, Peter Jr. assumed the role of President, Jeff as Chief Operations Officer and Lucy as Chairman.

Along with the varied benefits already being offered, DEI added profit sharing in 1992 and a 401K plan in 1997. Since then, DEI has contributed close to $4 million in their employee’s accounts. Growth has continued at a steady pace with over 110 restaurants open today and projections for 150 locations and $100 million in annual revenue by 2020.

In September of 2013, Dr. Kimberly Brooks, a 15-year DEI employee, was promoted to President. She is the fourth president in our history and the first non-family member to assume the role.

Today, with nearly 1,100 people on our team, we proudly live the values that have been instilled in us by our founders.

exert from http://www.subwaydipasqua.com/about/our-history-our-future

Update by Jennifer M Gifford

August 12, 2015

As of today DiPasqua Enterprises owns over 110 stores in Central Florida. Peter’s son Michael is working his way up in the company with goals to be CEO one day. Lynn, Jeff & Peter have sense retired and are enjoying life with their families. Lynn & Jeff have three children. Heather who is a teacher & mom to two amazing little ones. Laura recently married Brandon Fox & relocated to Napa Valley where they have opened a successful high end catering company. Alan as sense  joined Laura & Brandon in California and together they are running their company, Winery Chef’s. You can check them out here

Gayle Pryor owns 9 locations in the Ocoee area with the help of her husband John and three son’s Arthur, Jean & Stephen. Stephen has recently seen some great success with his new venture with The Orlando Area Rowing Society.  Arthur is a Master Mixer with THE AMEN BROS.BROADCASTING LIVE MONDAY EVENINGS AT 8PM EST (1AM TUES MORNING GMT/UTC) there are several sites where you can find and download his music mixes, one being right here

Donna DiPasqua owns 6 locations in the Ocala area being run by her children Lee & Jennifer Gifford. Lee has two children with another on the way due to arrive in December 2015. Jennifer is a proud soccer mom who runs her own Fine Art Photography business which has also seen some great successes this year. She has an editorial that has been published in Ocala Magazine, & will have one of her pieces published in a book in 2016. You can follow that project here

Curtis & Michael are still running Subway Development. Curtis’s children Dominique & Nicholas both work for the company. Dominique works in HR, while Nick is currently a Field Consultant for the company making sure all of the locations run efficiently and to SUBWAY standards. Michael’s son Michael Joseph is also a Franchisee working for the company. His daughter Anna is in New York following her dreams in entertainment.

Update!! August 28, 2015

The DiPasqua family dishes on evolving Subway while keeping the legacy alive

Visit the DiPasqua family for a gathering and you’d think this could be any big Italian family in the U.S., with moms, dads, uncles, aunts, kids and cousins sharing a meal, playing games in the yard, laughing and having a good time.

But if you listen closely, just about every conversation is centered around Subway restaurants.group-1-750xx5985-3379-0-621

Such is the life for a family whose name is nearly synonymous with Subway.

The DiPasqua family began DiPasqua Enterprises Inc. as Subway’s Orlando-area franchisee in 1977 and now is into its third generation of family-run submarine sandwich restaurants. It’s also one of the largest franchisee groups in the Milford, Conn.-based chain.

The DiPasquas — who have maintained a low public profile, talking to the media just a handful of times in the past several decades — recently sat down withOrlando Business Journal for an exclusive, rare in-depth look at their family and how they run their business.

“When we go to dinner or if we’re out on the golf course, we’re talking about Subway,” said Michael Angelo DiPasqua, 24, grandson of DiPasqua Enterprises founders Peter DiPasqua Sr. and Lucy DiPasqua. “It’s helped us younger guys learn and understand the business. And we can always bounce ideas off each other.”

The younger generation also is coming up with new ideas to help keep the 38-year-old DiPasqua Enterprises fresh in the sandwich market crowded with new competitors like Jimmy John’s and Jersey Mike’s Subs. “Competition makes you better,” said Curt DiPasqua, 59, one of the DiPasqua Enterprises founders’ sons. “We have to respond with product development, price incentives — whatever it takes. It keeps us on our toes.”

And as far as former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle’s fall from grace, the DiPasquas said they don’t feel like it has affected their business. “Every brand has its challenges,” said Nick DiPasqua, 28, one of the founders’ grandsons. “We’re lucky to have the franchise world headquarters help us handle those situations.”

Building an enterprise, one sandwich at a time

The DiPasquas’ Central Florida Subway dynasty began in the late 1970s, when Peter DiPasqua Sr. was training his youngest son and namesake to follow in his footsteps as a barber in Connecticut.

The course of their lives changed when a young man walked into the shop to get a haircut. As the customer got his trim, he told Peter DiPasqua Sr. about the sub sandwich company that wanted to expand into the southern U.S. Peter DiPasqua Sr. talked to his wife, Lucy, and told his then-18-year-old son, Peter, “You’re going to be a sandwich artist.”

Soon after, the couple took their life savings of $20,000 and another $2,000 from Peter DiPasqua Jr. and moved to Florida, opening a store on Horatio Avenue in Maitland — the state’s second Subway store. At the time, the father and son were the only employees. The company’s first-year revenue: $25,000.

Over time, the rest of the founders’ children joined the business, and today, that family empire includes two firms: DiPasqua Enterprises and Subway Development of Central Florida. They have hundreds of stores run by six second-generation family members and nine third-generation members.

When Peter DiPasqua Sr. and his wife divorced in 1985, she took over the stores and he held on to the area development. He died in 2002, and she died in 2006, leaving their children in charge.

Since then, the family has stayed at the forefront of the chain, with store volumes 20 percent higher than the national average. “One of the things they’ll do is be the first to adopt new marketing campaigns or techniques,” said Subway Chief Development Officer Don Fertman.

He pointed out that the founders’ son, Michael DiPasqua, 62, also looked at the quality of Subway’s bread about six years ago and “realized it needed work to up the game, so he instituted that in his territory and brought it to the headquarters. It got our focus back on the bread, the core ingredient of our sandwiches.”

DiPasqua Enterprises reported revenue of about $68 million in 2014 from 120 Subway stores, up from $62 million in 2013. The firm employs 1,200 people, including 950 in Central Florida. Peter DiPasqua Jr., the 54-year-old youngest son of the founders, now runs that part of the business with brother-in-law and sister Jeff and Lynn Ganssle, 56.
Meanwhile, Subway Development of Central Florida — headed up by the founders’ fourth child, Curt DiPasqua — is area developer for the region’s Subway restaurants, employing 18 and overseeing 348 franchised stores in 11 area counties.

Additionally, President and CEO Curt DiPasqua and eldest brother Michael DiPasqua — who retired from Subway Development of Central Florida about three years ago — have 45 franchised Subway restaurants of their own through Maitland-based PCMD Management Inc., which has 340 employees and posted revenue of $23 million in 2014.

Lessons and challenges

Early lessons learned by the elder DiPasquas helped set the stage for the company’s future. In fact, Peter DiPasqua Sr. taught his sons Curt and Peter Jr. a lesson when they were young about how to make sure the company’s money is spent correctly.

Years ago, when a store manager was arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol, Curt DiPasqua and Peter DiPasqua Jr. decided to bail him out of jail for $1,000 and put him back to work. “My brother Pete and I didn’t want to have to fill his position ourselves,” Curt DiPasqua said.

But when they told their father what they had done, Peter DiPasqua Sr. said if they were going to make decisions like that, they had to use their own money — not company funds.

“We told the manager we were taking him back to jail for a refund,” Curt DiPasqua said with a laugh, adding that the jail officials were shocked and told them that never had been done before. “But it was a lesson learned. When you use your own money, you’re a little more cautious.”

Since then, he has learned even more and run into new challenges, such as managing labor costs. He finds Obamacare to be costly from an administrative point of view, and he’s anticipating dealing with higher hourly wages. “There are some significant proposals out there on overtime with the potential for some very high labor costs.”
His plan to deal with labor costs? “Make sure you have the right people on board. If you’re paying more, you have to make sure you don’t have dead weight. And if the overtime laws come into effect, adjust schedules. We can’t afford to pay 50 percent more per hour and still keep our sandwiches competitively priced.”

Staying hip to the times

Meanwhile, keeping Central Florida’s Subway restaurants up with the times has been another challenge. That’s where the next generation of DiPasquas are introducing new ways to streamline operations.

For example, Curt DiPasqua’s son, Nick DiPasqua, this summer has repurposed an existing tech platform available to franchisees so they can use Subway Development of Central Florida’s point-of-sales system to track anomalies like theft and workers clocking out early. That could help the stores saves thousands of dollars.

Nick DiPasqua, the director of operations, also convinced his father to have store repairs done in-house, and one such move saved Subway Development of Central Florida about $10,000 a year.

He also suggested doing air-conditioner replacements through a purchasing cooperative rather than a local subcontractor, saving the company about $9,000 on the first store. Now they plan to do that with 45 stores, buying about 15 air-conditioners per year.

“He’s constantly bringing me new ideas,” Curt DiPasqua said of his son. “Young people bring new ideas and fresh energy. That’s an important part of the business. Otherwise, old guys like me get complacent.”

Nick DiPasqua’s younger cousin, Michael Angelo DiPasqua, also is doing his share. Michael Angelo DiPasqua brought Live IQ — a new technology used at the corporate level to access real-time data to read sales and better run restaurants — to his father Peter DiPasqua Jr.’s attention. And it could give DiPasqua Enterprises six-figure savings.

“We make our parents aware of what’s out there that can make things easier for us,” said Michael Angelo DiPasqua, who in December will be promoted to director of operations, overseeing 60 Subway restaurants.

Peter DiPasqua Jr., chairman and CEO of DiPasqua Enterprises, said having his son, Michael Angelo, in the business also is an advantage, since he’s more candid than an employee would be. “He would speak out where a lot of other people wouldn’t. I get all this great grassroots information I wouldn’t have heard otherwise.”

Greg McCann, founder and former director of the Stetson University Family Enterprise Center, said it’s important for family businesses like DiPasqua Enterprises to listen to the younger generation. “Gen Y has an audacity. We need that, because some businesses will be obsolete in five years.”

Continuing the growth

Meanwhile, the company wants to keep expanding at a time when competition is stiff. And having an established restaurant chain makes it difficult when you’re already on every corner.

So, the DiPasqua family is seeking unusual places to put stores that won’t cannibalize existing business, such as on hospital campuses, and even four locations inside the Walt Disney World Resort tunnels to serve employees. The family also is talking to military bases, hotels and warehouses.

“We opened a store a month for almost the last 25 years across my territory,” Curt DiPasqua said. “I expect we’ll have eight to 10 new stores this year. I anticipate growth slowing for now, but good sites still are available.”

His advice to others looking to run a family business: “Humility is important because people will make assumptions that the next generation is getting privileges just because they’re family. The only way to combat that is to be humble and work hard. Recognize that everyone in this company has contributed more than you because you’re new.”
Peter DiPasqua Jr. added that it’s key to realize that owning part of the family business is not a job itself. “We keep our employment and ownership separate. We all have roles in the company. That’s the big part of our success.”

Where in the world is Subway?

The DiPasqua family has found ways to put Subway restaurants into non-traditional places like in the famous Disney employee tunnels, hospitals and even on military bases. And the DiPasquas aren’t alone, as the chain can be found in many other unusual places. Here’s what we got from the corporate office in Milford, Conn.:
Dual-hemisphere: Subway in December 2014 opened a restaurant in Quito, Ecuador, near the Mitad del Mundo — which translates to “the middle of the world.” The city features a line drawn on the ground to estimate the location of the equator separating Earth’s Northern and Southern hemispheres and you can have feet in both hemispheres.

Security clearance required: Talk about it being tough to get in. The Subway restaurant inside the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., has been referred to as the most heavily guarded restaurant in the world. It is in one of several food courts in the enormous building that serves meals to members of all branches of the U.S. military, visiting dignitaries and government officials.

Hangaring out: The 10,000th non-traditional Subway restaurant opened in a Yingling Aviation hangar at the Wichita Mid-Continent Airport in Kansas. Along with traditional Subway décor, this restaurant features propellers, historic aviation photos and large windows so customers can watch the runway and see the planes inside nearby hangars.

The Word and a good sub: The pastor of True Bethel Baptist Church in Buffalo, N.Y., also happens to be a Subway franchisee. So, he decided to open a restaurant in the church that not only serves up good sandwiches, but also serves the community by teaching job skills, interview techniques and customer service to area residents who live in this economically depressed part of the city.

Subs and economic opportunity: The Goodwill Industries regional office in Greenville, S.C., features a Subway restaurant that’s part of a program providing job training, employment placement and other services to clients with barriers to employment, such as various disabilities, lack of education or experience, or other challenges.
River cruising with a footlong: The MS Stolzenfels riverboat, which cruises the Rhine river in Germany, features an on-board Subway restaurant.

Source: Subway
Cornering the submarine market
Subway has dominated the sandwich and sub store franchise industry and is expected to continue to do so for at least the next five years.
Subway: 65.8%
Jimmy John’s: 9.7%
Other: 24.5%
Source: Ibisworld Inc.


Family dynasty created by 1970s ‘hip cat’ evolves as younger generation takes over

Sep 18, 2015, 4:22pm EDT Updated Sep 20, 2015, 6:59pm EDT  

Bringing in young blood to carry on the tradition and use technology and new methods helps DiPasqua Enterprises Inc. — Subway’s Orlando-area franchisee — stay successful and relevant in the fast-changing world of food.

Today, DiPasqua is a $68 million firm with 120 Subway stores and 1,200 employees, up from $62 million in revenue in 2013. It is run by 15 members of the DiPasqua family, which opened its first Subway restaurant in 1977 in Orlando on East Colonial Drive and Bumby Avenue.

DiPasqua Enterprises is one of Central Florida’s top privately held companies and one of the region’s top employers, based on Orlando Business Journal research.

As the DiPasqua family business grew, so did their popularity at the corporate level, not only because of their business savvy, but also because of their musical talents. In fact, that’s one of Subway Chief Development Officer Don Fertman’s fondest memories of meeting the DiPasqua family.

“One time I went to a party at [Subway co-founder] Peter Buck’s house and I heard this jazz combo. There’s this hip cat with a slim frame and a little goatee playing the sax — it was Pete DiPasqua Sr., and there was Pete DiPasqua Jr. on the drums.”

The family was just as passionate about the Subway business as it was about music, Fertman said. “When it comes to having well-run stores and professionals who understand the business inside and out, they about have the longest experience in this organization.”

“ I heard there was this dude who was a Subway development agent and franchisee who also was an amazing sax player. I wanted to meet this guy,” said Fertman, who began working for Subway shortly after the DiPasquas started as franchisees. “ The DiPasquas are one of the larger families in the chain.”

Another fun fact: The DiPasquas make sure not only family members, but all employees have access to the company’s finances, thereby showing that when a family member is promoted, it’s purely on the merit of their work. “One of my smartest business moves was to bring open-book management to our company and a culture of profit-and-loss accountability and entrepreneurship to the people running restaurants,” said Peter DiPasqua Jr., 54, who heads up DiPasqua Enterprises with brother-in-law and sister Jeff and Lynn Ganssle, 56. “We share all our numbers and the financial outcome of those numbers create an environment where we all win and sometimes even lose together.”

That’s important, said Michael Angelo DiPasqua, 24, who admitted that while his father, Peter DiPasqua Jr., may be willing to listen to him, some of the older store managers aren’t always as willing. “I’ve got some managers who’ve been doing this longer than I’ve been alive, but it’s a fun challenge for me to convince them. I just show them why we’re changing, the reasons behind it and I back it up. You don’t just force it on them. Sometimes it just takes time.”

For the rest of the story on evolving the company while keeping its legacy alive, see OBJ’s Aug. 28, 2015, weekly edition.

Through the years: DiPasqua family timeline

Aug 28, 2015, 6:00am EDT 

1965: Subway gets its start as CEO Fred DeLuca and Peter Buck open Pete’s Super Submarines in Bridgeport, Conn.

1968: DeLuca and Buck start using the name Subway.

1974: Subway has 16 stores. To expand faster, DeLuca and Buck began to franchise.

1977: Peter DiPasqua Sr., his wife, Lucy, and his youngest son, Peter DiPasqua Jr., open their first Subway restaurant in Orlando on East Colonial Drive and Bumby Avenue.

1980: Another of DiPasqua Sr.’s sons, Curt DiPasqua, joins the family business.

Early 1980s: The company expands to include DiPasqua Sr.’s daughter, Lynn, and her husband, Jeff Ganssle, and the group together has five Subway restaurants.

1987: Michael DiPasqua joins his father and brother Curt at Subway Development of Central Florida.

1986: Lucy DiPasqua is named president and Peter Jr. is promoted to CEO. The group operates 12 restaurants.

1990: The company grows from 20 to 30 restaurants in 11 months; Ganssle is promoted to director of operations.

4 more Subway eateries coming to C. Fla.

Aug 28, 2015, 2:40pm EDT

Anjali Fluker
Senior Staff Writer
Orlando Business Journal

Central Florida’s largest Subway restaurants franchisee is growing its empire in the Orlando area, adding three new stores by next year and relocating one more eatery.
Winter Park-based DiPasqua Enterprises Inc. plans to bring new eateries to residents, workers and visitors in Winter Park, east Orlando and the Universal Orlando Resort area beginning next month. DiPasqua Enterprises — one of Central Florida’s top privately held firms and among the region’s top employers with 1,200 workers — already has 120 Subway restaurants throughout the region and typically hires about 10 workers for each new store.

Central Florida’s largest Subway restaurant franchisee is bringing some new stores to hot submarkets in the region.Central Florida’s largest Subway restaurant franchisee is bringing some new stores to hot… more
The company is relocating its Winter Park Subway two blocks south to 908 S. Orange Ave., upsizing from its existing 632 square feet to 1,120 square feet. The company is slated to take possession of the property next week and looks to open in October. “It will be a gem of the community with high ceilings, stone pillars inside, and Subway’s new ‘Metro’ decor,” said Paul VanOrden, restaurant development specialist for DiPasqua Enterprises.

A new store is set to open later this year at the Shell fueling station at 5922 Turkey Lake Road near Universal Studios Florida.
A new 1,500-square-foot store is scheduled to open in next year’s first quarter at Dowdy Plaza, which is now being rebuilt next to the entrance to Wet ‘n Wild water park.
DiPasqua Enterprises has signed a letter of intent for a 1,680-square-foot space in the Palms at Lake Underhill, a new 30,000-square-foot office and retail development near Florida Hospital East Orlando. This store is anticipated to open in next year’s third quarter.DiPasqua Enterprises also is one of the first mall tenants to be revealed as part of the $400 million iSquare Mall + Hotel set to come to the southeast corner of Kirkman Road and International Drive in 2017. DiPasqua’s existing lease at the International Shoppes strip mall — which will be torn down and redeveloped into iSquare — includes a provision that if the developer demolishes its existing location, Subway will be guaranteed a spot in the new development through 2028, VanOrden told Orlando Business Journal.
Read more about DiPasqua Enterprises and how the third-generation family business is staying fresh while keeping the legacy alive in OBJ’s Aug. 28 weekly edition.
And come back to OrlandoBusinessJournal.com for updates.

Exclusive: iSquare Mall + Hotel’s first retail tenant revealed

Aug 27, 2015, 5:35pm EDT Updated Aug 28, 2015, 3:31pm EDT

The future $400 million iSquare Mall + Hotel on Orlando’s International Drive is expected to draw a lot of upscale, international tenants — but a very familiar retailer already secured a spot in the project.

Winter Park-based local Subway restaurants franchisee DiPasqua EnterprisesInc. confirmed it will close its existing store when the International Shoppes strip mall on the corner of Kirkman Road and I-Drive is demolished, and will take up residence in a newly built space once iSquare’s four-story mall and dual-tower hotel debuts sometime in 2017.


“We already have a signed lease to be part of the retail level of the new project,” DiPasqua Enterprises Restaurant Development Specialist Paul VanOrden toldOrlando Business Journal. “This will be a very exciting location for DiPasqua Enterprises.”

DiPasqua Enterprises is one of Central Florida’s top privately-held companies, as well as one of the region’s top employers, based on OBJ research. DiPasqua’s existing lease at the International Shoppes includes a provision that says it will be part of any future development if its current space is torn down and rebuilt, VanOrden told OBJ.

Meanwhile, the mall portion of the iSquare mixed-use project is expected tofeature about 225,410 square feet of gross leasable space, according to plans submitted to the city of Orlando earlier this year. No other mall tenants have been announced.

As you can see the future looks bright for our family. All thanks to two old school Italian’s that had a dream. Who worked their butts off and instilled great values and amazing work ethic into this awesome family. Cant wait to see what the future has in store for us next! Stay tuned!


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