From DJ's to City's
Krolick, forty-one, and Stone, thirty-nine, know Jenkins from way back. DJ's was next door to Banfield's Bar and Grill, where Krolick worked as a bartender and manager from 1990 to 1999 before leaving to work for Fastenal, a national distributor of construction and industrial supplies. Stone worked at Banfield's in the same capacity from 1993 until this spring. All three were friends (Stone and Krolick met in the sixth grade), so they had no reservations about doing business together. And Jenkins' business philosophy dovetailed with that of his two friends, both of whom studied business in college, with Krolick going on to get his MBA.
"DJ's was a family business," Krolick says. "[Andrew] wanted to keep that kind of mentality. And certainly that's our goal, to keep it more of a traditional family kind of pizzeria and sub shop. We're both Ann Arbor kids. Our families are from the area. And we really want to grow the business around Ann Arbor, keep that kind of hometown feel to it."
Andrew's dad, Dean Jenkins, opened what was originally a Domino's Pizza franchise in 1967, but he left Domino's a year later and renamed it DJ's, after his own initials. And while Andrew, forty-seven, didn't buy out his dad until 2000, he grew up in the business. "I worked here...half my life," he says. "I started at five years old." This year, he was finally ready to sell the business and retire. He says he had three or four interested buyers, but he approached Stone and Krolick because they "had the go and the best chance at continuing at what we sold at DJ's Pizza."