From Delivery Driver to Area Developer, Sarpino’s Pizza Leader Helps Franchisees Meet Goals | Franchise News

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Sarpino’s Pizza is a Canadian-born pizza concept that came to Chicago in 2003, the same year that Vasili Bykau started as a delivery driver.

Vasili Bykau has worn many hats in his 20 years with Sarpino’s Pizza. From delivery driver to franchisee and now to area developer for South Florida, he’s seen all the company offers and plans to use his experience to support his franchisees and employees through their own careers.

“My major goal is that my franchisees are successful,” said Bykau. “Franchisees are human beings and they’re looking” for opportunities. “My job is to make sure they’re meeting their goals.”

Founded in 2001, Sarpino’s is a pizza franchise focusing on takeout and delivery. It has more than 70 locations in Canada, the United States and Singapore.

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Vasili Bykau was named area developer for South Florida last September.

An immigrant seeking political asylum from Belarus, Bykau arrived in Chicago in 2003. Though he had a law degree from his time in Belarus, he knew that being a lawyer in the United States would require him to be fluent in English and return to school. Needing a job to start his new life, he became a delivery driver for Sarpino’s at the age of 23. 

“I realized that it would be challenging to become a lawyer here, and while I was working at Sarpino’s as a delivery driver” he learned about the franchise model, he said. “I saw an opportunity to grow with this company.”

Bykau decided to dedicate himself to a new career. While driving, he worked to improve his English and learn restaurant operations. Soon, he was promoted to manager and a few years later was offered the opportunity to become a partner at his location.

Once a partner, Bykau began to grow Sarpino’s in Chicago, purchasing and opening a total of three restaurants. In 2014 he sold those stores and moved to Florida, where he opened another Sarpino’s. His Florida location became, and still is, one of the top performing restaurants for Sarpino’s in the country.

Seeing his success, the company offered him the job as the first area developer for South Florida in September 2022. He said he accepted because he enjoyed growing restaurants and helping his staff develop and learn just like he did. He sold his restaurants in South Florida to managers and employees, specifically ones he saw as similar to himself.

Bykau’s goal as an area developer is to support his franchisees the way he was supported through his career. This means educating employees who show an interest in learning, have an ambition to grow within Sarpino’s and want to realize their own professional goals, whether that’s going corporate or franchising.

“Every time I hired somebody, I want to see if this person has specific goals or at least have a desire to grow and develop themselves,” said Bykau.

While he’s not hiring anymore, he looks for franchisees that are motivated and ambitious already since “that’s what I like in people.” He said he keeps an open mind and door when it comes to educating and supporting success.

“I provide support for franchisees, that’s my biggest area of responsibility,” said Bykau. “I want to make sure that every new franchisee is successful starting from the beginning.”

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