- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 4, 2015

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) - A company that started with three Domino’s stores in South Mississippi 34 years ago this week is adding 73 stores in what is being called the largest Domino’s U.S. acquisition.

Glenn Mueller Sr. and his brother, Richard, opened Domino’s on Feb. 6, 1981, in Gulfport. The business, which remains headquartered in Gulfport, has been the largest U.S. franchisee in the Domino system for 30 years.

Now, the brothers tell The Sun Herald (http://bit.ly/16mGmW4 ) they are buying 45 stores in Indiana from Bob Taylor. The acquisition includes nearly 40 stores in the Indianapolis metro area, and stores serving South Bend near the University of Notre Dame and West Lafayette, home of Purdue University.

Glenn Mueller said the Indianapolis area has close to 1 million people and the opportunity was there.

Mueller said RPM will also buy stores in North Carolina.

Another 28 new stores are part of the agreement and will be built in Mississippi, Louisiana and Indiana, Mueller said. With this purchase, 185 stores will be operated by RPM Pizza, and Mueller said the goal is at least 215 stores by 2018.

When complete, the acquisition will give RPM Pizza operations in seven states, employing more than 3,800 with an annual payroll exceeding $35 million. Other stores are in Michigan, South Carolina and Georgia.

The company already employs more than 500 people in Mississippi and 2,500 in Louisiana. Most have attended or graduated from South Mississippi high schools and Mississippi colleges.

“That’s what I like. We’re hiring local people that really built this company,” Mueller said.

He said many start with part-time jobs that grow into full-time careers.

“We give them some great training they can take with them wherever they go,” he said.

Mueller said RPM Pizza has helped 150 people - most of them from Mississippi - get their own Domino’s franchises.

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Information from: The Sun Herald, http://www.sunherald.com

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