How This New Happy Joe’s Franchise Is Reinventing Dining In Texas

A group of individuals led by Rickey McBride, Bryan Shorter, and other childhood friends have initiated an expansion of Happy Joe’s Pizza & Ice Cream locations to Texas. This marks the first time in the American Pizza Parlor’s more than 50 years of business that a Black-owned business group has held ownership. Tom Sacco, CEO and Chief Happiness Officer of Happy Joe’s, is excited about the organization’s efforts to increase diversity. 


They aim to include more minority-owned, veteran-owned and female-owned franchisees to represent the customers of their establishments better nationally. Connor McBride is a successful entrepreneur in Atlanta and a former alumnus of Davenport Central High. Before founding Happy Joe´s, while attending Georgia Southern University, he also played semi-pro football in the southern U.S. 


Happy Joe's Famous Cheese Sticks

He has fond memories of his high school days spent with friends at Happy Joe’s, located in the Quad Cities. McBride and his partners chose to expand Happy Joe’s, a Midwestern brand, to the southern US. This pizza experience offers various offerings and creative options; customers are known for being treated well. Persuaded by the majority-minority population in Texas, McBride and his team decided to enter the market. 


The manager McBride is enthusiastic about bringing Happy Joe’s American Pizza Parlor to the Lone Star State as it is their first minority-owned franchise group (Crunchbase). 

Additionally, McBride looks forward to his daughter enjoying experiences with food she can eat and still safely staying within her own neighborhood despite her allergies. Happy Joe’s is a family-friendly restaurant chain founded in 1972 by Joe Whitty in Davenport, Iowa. They specialize in pizza and ice cream, and Pizza Marketplace has recognized them as one of the top 100 brands to watch. There are already three company locations and 42 franchises across the Midwest, with 28 more in development.