It's Alô Pizza Timing

37-year-old entrepreneur from Faro wants to have «the largest business group in the region by 2030»

Photos: Mariana Sedge | Sul Informação

The pizza will still taste the same, it is possible to order thin or fluffy dough and the faces you find there will also be the usual ones. After 30 years of history, Alô Pizza has changed hands, but the objective is «to maintain everything that is good» so that it continues to be «number 1», but not only in Faro. 

Alô Pizza was born in the capital of the Algarve by the hands of a couple who thought that «it was time for other people to be able to lead the company’s destiny, trying to follow up on some of the ideas that they themselves already had», says entrepreneur Ricardo Mariano, CEO from the Timing group, which is the new owner of this pizzeria since the 1st of July.

As in all the businesses he enters, Ricardo Mariano, 37, has a well-defined objective for Alô Pizza: «leave the pillars, maintain quality» and, already in 2024, open more spaces.

When the «digital transformation of the company is completed», the expansion plan will include the opening of a third space, in one of the malls algarvios, where the sliced ​​pizza format will be tested.

«That is the challenge and that is where we are headed, already in the first half of 2024», announced the businessman, in an interview with Sul Informação, explaining that the brand will work in three formats.


Interior of one of Alô Pizza's spaces today – Photo: Mariana Carriço | Sul Informação


«As soon as this process of internal modernization ends, at the end of the year, we will then start the expansion plan, with our own units, new openings by our hands, in other geographies of the Algarve, as well as the launch of a model of franchise, which is also what led us to buy the company. This way, other people will be able to have their Alô Pizza, in other parts of the Algarve or outside the region, in one of the three formats that we are going to present: restaurant with delivered e takeaway [option that exists in Gambelas], a second option only with takeaway, which is our current reality in Baixa de Faro, or in an environment Shopping, with option by the slice».

According to Ricardo Mariano, per day, Alô Pizza sells at least 200 pizzas and, «on strong days», sells between 400 and 500.

«We have the data of our competitors and we are sure that nobody sells more pizzas in Faro than us. We have people of very advanced age who don't give up their pizza on that day of the week and have been doing it for, if necessary, 20 and such years. People who order the same pizza every Friday, the same size (…), it's very funny. On the other hand, we have a student community that is in constant renewal and that, in fact, is also a public that adheres a lot to Alô Pizza», says Ricardo Mariano.

As for employees and suppliers, there is no doubt about wanting to keep existing ones.


Alô Pizza Restaurant in Gambelas – Photo: Mariana Carriço | Sul Informação


“What we conveyed to all suppliers and employees was that we want to continue working with them. We didn't arrive at a point of view that we know everything and don't need anyone, it's exactly the opposite. The partners that have helped Alô Pizza to grow until today are the ones we want by our side», guarantees Ricardo Mariano.

The well-known entrepreneur from the Algarve, CEO of the Timing group, opened his first company at the age of 21 and has continued to grow ever since. At the moment, in addition to Alô Pizza, he owns another 10 companies.

He started at SW, a human resources company, where he worked for seven years. In between, at the age of 24, he opened another company,, «which was market leader in Portugal for a long time», and which remains open until today.

«The strategic vision that I have today, I certainly didn't have when I was 18, but I had an enormous desire and thirst to win, to work, to present results, to solve problems and to have professional pride», confesses Ricardo Mariano.

In 2015, the businessman leaves SW and opens Timing, his own temporary work company, in what he considers «the biggest challenge» of his life and which is today «the largest employer in the private sector in the Algarve».

From hotels to construction, passing through distribution and catering, every year Timing helps hundreds of people to find «the best job adapted to their characteristics», «trying to do what match ideal" among workers and the 600 partner companies throughout the country.

Although today it is a company that earns around 30 million a year, Ricardo Mariano recalls that «it started from nothing», «without family financial support».

«The first two years at Timing were very difficult because I wanted, from the very first day, to take the company to the big leagues», where he says it was possible to reach with «the support of the whole team, which was also fueling this ambition ».



For Ricardo Mariano, «one of the greatest pleasures of this activity is being able to give opportunities to those who do not have them».

«As a rule, the objective of a chosen hotel is to try to recruit people with the best possible profile, knowing that the age and appearance factor sometimes weighs heavily. When we are the ones who decide who we are going to put in a certain position that was handed over to Timing, we have the privilege of being able to decide which is the person we consider best to occupy that position and, on some occasions, when you give the opportunity to older people to show what they're worth, it's very valuable», he considers, reinforcing that often these people don't get it «through the front door».

But Timing is joined by other companies: the Place gym, a traditional laundry and another self service, Timing Outsourcing (essentially cleaning), three restoration projects, sold during the pandemic, (Timing Café, Papaya and Oh My Dog), Free Gifts 360 (which is on the market with usb spot and Ecological Gifts), the Vendingway, Proinvest (a real estate company), the Lets Buy and dear Faro, a guesthouse with 14 rooms.

«Our goal is to be the largest business group in the region by 2030, based on four pillars: by volume of turnover, by net results, by number of employees and by good internal and external practices of the organization», concludes Ricardo Mariano, reinforcing that the The objective will always be “to leave your name in history”.

New phase of Alô Pizza marked with Solidarity Party

Timing wanted to mark the beginning of this new stage of Alô Pizza with a solidarity party, during which it offered 100 pizzas to different associations of Faro – AIPAR, Association for the Protection of Girls and the Family, Instituto D. Francisco Gomes – Casa dos Rapazes, APPC Faro – Portuguese Association of Cerebral Palsy of Faro, and AAPACDM – Algarvian Association of Parents and Friends of Mentally Handicapped Children and APATRIS 21.

Lunch took place at the Alô Pizza das Gambelas restaurant, while dozens of other pizzas were delivered directly to the associations, and even to the beach of Faro.

Inês Narciso, manager of the social responsibility department at the Timing Group, says that «this social solidarity initiative was designed to support our community and provide a fun and tasty day for these more vulnerable groups. It is essential that, more and more, companies create a commitment and assume social responsibility towards the community. Living these experiences is enriching for those who give and for those who receive, they are moments, smiles and sharing that remain in everyone's memory».

Patrícia Banza, technical director of the APPC Residential Home and Autonomous Residence, one of the associations that were present at the initiative, points out that «it is with great joy and satisfaction that the customers and employees of the APPC Residential Home and Autonomous Residence Faro thank you for participating in the Alô Pizza Solidarity Party, kindly provided by the Timing Group's Social Responsibility Department, on August 1st, at our facilities».

«The arrival of the pizzas was a surprise factor, translating into a very happy moment that, without a doubt, is reflected in the well-being of our young people!», he continued.


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