Italian pizza giant Sicilians Pizza opened its first store in Washington, D.c., in December 2017.
Now the pizza chain is opening up its first brick-and-mortar shop in the nation’s capital, a move that will open a path to expanding the business in the U.S.
A growing pizza chain, Sicilia is based in the Sicilian town of Siena, about 80 miles (130 kilometers) north of Rome.
Its pizza is sold by a network of about 50 restaurants in the United States and Europe.
In its first few years, Sicailians grew its business by more than 70 percent.
Now it hopes to have more than 400 restaurants in 20 states by 2020.
Sicilicias first store opened on a Friday in October 2017, and the company hopes to open an expanded location this year.
Sicilia said its goal is to sell 500,000 pizzas annually by 2020, with the aim of reaching 500 million by 2021.
For that to happen, it needs to grow its pizza business in a way that allows for the chain to take advantage of local markets and consumers.
For the first time, the company will have a brick- and-mortart shop in its first district, where customers will be able to order the same type of pizza as at the restaurant on the first floor.
The chain plans to open a second branch of the new Sicailias in the city’s Old Town.
For the company, the move is a step forward in an industry that is growing rapidly.
For example, the number of pizzerias in the US has nearly tripled in the past 20 years, to 1.3 million in 2018 from 812,000 in 2016, according to data from the National Restaurant Association.
Sicailia, which has a sales force of about 100,000 people, said the expansion is expected to help it compete with a rising number of competitors.
Sicilia’s first store, which opened in December in a former factory in Sienia, is located in the Old Town district of Washington, a bustling commercial hub that attracts more than 1 million people a year.
The company will open its first branch of its new store, a former manufacturing facility in Sicailliys hometown of Sialia, in the Washington DC neighborhood of Silver Spring, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) east of the capital.
The company plans to expand its locations to other states in 2020, and will also open a branch in San Francisco by the end of 2020.
The Washington branch is expected open in March 2021.
The company is planning to invest more than $1 billion in the new stores and is also looking to open more stores in Italy and other countries.
In addition to its Washington and San Francisco branches, Siacilias restaurants are slated to open in San Diego, Phoenix, Miami and Portland, Oregon.