Onetime Delivery Guy Now Owns 18 Domino's

And that's not a rare story

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Apr 25, 2013 11:24 AM CDT

(Newser) – It sounds like a rare rags-to-riches story: A man joins Domino's at 19 as a delivery guy and goes on to own 18 franchises. In fact, 90% of Domino's 4,500 franchise spots are owned by former entry-level employees, says a rep. CNNMoney recounts the story of Rob Cookston, a $500-a-month delivery man in 1987 who was inspired when he saw his franchise owner's Ferrari.

The Virginia man entered the chain's management skills program; as a store manager-in-training, he made $89,000 in his first year. "It was a big challenge. I wanted to quit at times," he says, explaining the pressures of the job: five phone lines that could never go unanswered; pizzas that had to be delivered in 30 minutes. Instead, he went on to manage six stores, then borrowed money from his family and bought a franchise in New York City. He lived in the basement of another franchise and saved to buy more. He was making about $200,000 then; now, he lives "insanely comfortably," he says—and seven of his delivery workers have become managers themselves.

In this Feb. 11, 2007 file photo, a Domino's Pizza delivery driver heads to his car with orders in Sandy, Utah.   (AP Photo/Douglas C. Pizac, file)
This photo provided by Domino's Pizza Inc., shows the Wisconsin 6 Cheese pizza.   (AP Photo/Domino's Pizza Inc.)
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