Domino's CEO is leaving the company after fixing the pizza chain's 'cardboard crust' reputation

  • Domino's CEO J. Patrick Doyle is leaving the company.
  • Doyle played a crucial role in Domino's turnaround, leading the company in tech innovation and a major reputation makeover.
  • The new CEO will be Richard Allison, the current president of Domino's International. 

Domino's CEO is leaving the pizza chain after executing an impressive turnaround and fixing the chain's reputation. 

On Tuesday, the pizza chain announced that president and CEO J. Patrick Doyle would leave the company in June, after more than eight years leading the pizza chain. 

Doyle became Domino's CEO in 2010, following a period of decline at the chain. Domino's slumped from 2006 to 2008 as customers slammed its pizza's "cardboard crust" and ketchup-y sauce. 

The pizza chain launched a campaign acknowledging the problems — down to the criticism that people would prefer microwave pizza over Domino's — with Doyle appearing in the ad to promise the chain would make changes. 

Domino's Pizza delivery methods
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Domino's Pizza delivery methods

A Domino Pizza shop employee drives a one-seater electric vehicle named 'Qi', produced by Japanese toy maker Takara, to deliver pizzas to a customer in Tokyo, 14 November 2003. The compact electric vehicle Qi enables a user to drive 60kms for 45 minutes charge with a maximum speed of 35 mph.


Domino's delivery driver Robert Isuf paddles a canoe down the River Loose in Maidstone, Kent, to deliver fresh pizza to Debbie Hayes, as Domino's announces it is trialling a waterway delivery service in the canal side village.

(David Parry/PA Wire)

A Domino's Pizza delivery rider seen on his way to deliver pizza in London's financial district, Friday, January 6, 2006. Domino's Pizza U.K. & Ireland Plc, the largest British pizza-delivery chain, may say sales for the six weeks into the New Year increased as a result of new outlets.

(Photo by Graham Barclay/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Delivery vehicles stand outside a Domino's Pizza Inc. fast food store in Moscow, Russia, on Monday, Aug. 15, 2011. Domino's, which has 4,900 stores in the U.S. and 4,400 international locations, will open as many as 300 stores a year over the long-term, with most being in overseas markets.

(Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Domino's Pizza delivery motorbike, Cornwall

(Education Images/UIG via Getty Images)

American chain Domino's pizza delivery by Domino's bicycles in Copenhagen.

(Photo by Francis Joseph Dean/DeanPictures)

Domino's franchisee Craig Birchall, and store manager, Angus Sinclair outside their Domino's Pizza Delivery store in Grattan St Carlton. The company has been listed on the ASX on 16th May, 2005.

(Fairfax Media via Getty Images)


The bulk of the chain's turnaround was a long-term project under Doyle's leadership. 

"This is not a turnaround that took two or three years," Domino's CFO Jeff Lawrence said at the ICR Conference in Orlando on Tuesday. "Some of these things took a decade or more." 

Domino's also made major investments in technology, with more than 60% of orders now being placed via digital channels. 

Today, Domino's has some of the most impressive financials in the industry.

The chain has grown its share of the pizza-delivery market by roughly 1% every year since 2011. It reached 27.2% in 2016, up from 21.9% in 2011. And, as other pizza chains have struggled, Domino's announced in October that the company grew global retail sales by 14.5% in the most recent quarter.

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US same-store sales have increased every year since 2009, and internationally, the brand has reported 21 consecutive years of same-store sales growth. 

With Doyle leaving, Richard Allison, the current president of Domino's International, will become CEO starting July 1. The company also announced that Russell Weiner, the president of Domino's USA, will take on the new role of chief operating officer of Domino's and president of the Americas. 

Domino's Burger Pizza
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Domino's Burger Pizza
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