Pepsi Expands Atlanta Footprint
Monday, October 11th, 2021
In the latest example of its encroachment on its rival's territory, Pepsi today announced it will become the exclusive beverage partner of This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q (formerly known as This Is It! BBQ and Seafood), pioneers of Southern homestyle cuisine and the south's largest Black-owned fast-casual restaurant chain. After more than 30 years with the competition, This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q is the biggest local business to join the ever-increasing number of partners #NowServingPepsi. Pepsi is marking the announcement in downtown Atlanta with dynamic digital billboards and limited time offers for fans.
"We are thrilled to be making the momentous switch to serving Pepsi across our 11 locations," said Shelley 'Butch' Anthony III, Founder, President and CEO of This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q. "As a brand that understands the value of community, seeing the impactful work done in the Atlanta area through their Pepsi Stronger Together initiative made it clear Pepsi is the best partner for us moving forward. Nothing brings people together quite like a good, Southern meal, and we're excited to offer our signature dishes alongside the unmatched flavor of an ice-cold Pepsi."
Beginning tomorrow, multiple digital billboards will be unveiled in high-traffic areas of downtown Atlanta to boldly make it known that This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q has made 'the switch' and is #NowServingPepsi. The eye-catching creative assets also feature a custom, united logo and messaging celebrating two Southern icons - Pepsi and This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q – and their shared love of the Atlanta community and its local bites.
"Our foodservice partners are invaluable to Pepsi, and I am proud to have had our work recognized by a family-run business that is an integral part of Atlanta," said Chauncey Hamlett, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of PepsiCo Beverages North America (South Division). "With more than 2,000 PepsiCo employees and even more fans in the Atlanta-metro area, it is important we continue to invest in the local community. Working with This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q represents not only a way to demonstrate our continued support of Black-owned businesses, but a way for us to expand our work locally, and for Atlanta residents to finally get to enjoy their This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q favorites with a Pepsi."
This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q was inspired to partner with Pepsi after taking notice of the brand's work in the Atlanta area via Pepsi Stronger Together, a series of grassroots initiatives to address issues relating to community, sustainability, and education, as well as Pepsi Dig In, a platform designed to drive access, business acceleration, and awareness to Black-owned restaurants.
For Pepsi, the partnership ladders up to its larger Racial Equality Journey, which in 2020 saw the company announce commitments of more than $570 million over the next five years to elevate diverse voices within the company, supply chain partners, and communities, while helping to address issues of inequality and create opportunity.
To celebrate the partnership– and in a cheeky nod to the switch to Pepsi – This Is It! Southern Kitchen & Bar-B-Q is turning their sweet homemade velvet cake from red to Pepsi blue for a limited time only. As a special offer, customers can also purchase a new take on the restaurant's famous 2 for $32 value meals with two dinners, two Pepsi products, and two desserts for only $32, so that everyone can enjoy their favorite rib tips, catfish, fried chicken, pork chops and more with an ice-cold Pepsi. Order online at www.thisisitbbq.com and follow the conversation on social media with #NowServingPepsi.