Pizza lovers who don’t happen to have American currency on them can still purchase their favorite pies with Mexican pesos, thanks to a Texas-based restaurant chain.
Starting this week, Pizza Patr?n outlets, which caters heavily to Mexicans, will offer the alternative form of payment.
“We’re trying to reach out to our core customer,” Antonio Swad, president of Pizza Patr?n Inc., told the Dallas Morning News.
“We know they come back [from Mexico] and have pesos left over. We want to be a convenient place for them to spend their pesos.”
It’s believed no other food chain operating so far from the Mexican border is allowing customers to pay with foreign currency.
Swad said he’s prepared to take criticism from American consumers possibly offended by the bypassing of greenbacks.
“We’re not really interested in finding the safest spot on the board,” he told the paper. “We know the purity of our intention, and we’re willing to take the heat when there is heat.”
About 60 percent of Pizza Patr?n customers and 45 percent of its franchisees are Hispanic.
“If you’re not in a border town, I don’t see the functional benefit,” said Juan Faura, president and chief executive of Cultura, a Dallas-based marketing and advertising firm. “I would see it as a move by the chain to communicate unequivocally to the Hispanic market that they are for them.”
“I don’t see any other reason for it,” Faura added.
Andrew Gamm, Pizza Patr?n’s director of brand development, said the company has already seen customers spending “a couple hundred pesos” without any advertisement of the service during a test in a Mesquite location.
Founded in 1986, Pizza Patr?n has gone from four locations to 59 and more than 40 under development across the American Southwest.
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