Walking into most pizza parlours in Toronto, it’s rare to find the restaurant owner front and centre kneading and tossing your pizza dough to perfection. But that’s the exact scene customers are greeted by when walking into Pi Co Pizza Bar at the corner of Spadina Avenue and Richmond Street West.
Dusted in flour from his elbows to fingertips, Eden Hazan draws on a lifetime spent around pizza to make sure that each ball of dough is blended and crafted to your expectations.
“I have been around pizza since I was a young kid and have grown to absolutely love everything that has to do with it,” said Hazan.
Hazan’s love of pizza has expanded to three business ventures in the past six years. In addition to being a Pi Co franchise owner, he’s the president of King David Frozen Products, a frozen pizza line, and co-founder of The SocialDrop, a social media marketing agency.
Toronto seems like the ideal playground for ambitious entrepreneurs like Hazan. In 2018, the CBC reported a study done by StarupBlink, a Swiss website that provides data, that Toronto was rated the 11th best city for a startup business in the world. Canada ranked third overall.
For Hazan, it all began after he graduated from Western University in 2012. He decided to grow his family’s frozen King David’s Pizza brand the following year. The business quickly and now offers a full line of frozen products.
“I took the brand name and recipe and created a line of all natural, kosher frozen pizzas that are now sold at supermarkets and grocery stores all over Canada,” he said in an interview.
Using King David’s Frozen Pizza brand as a stepping stone, Hazan ventured into social media with an Instagram account called @pizzaboyinthe6ix that showcased his pizza obsession. After gaining over 28,000 followers, Hazan found a niche in social media that was not being occupied. That’s when The SocialDrop joined his customized line of businesses.
“I noticed that there weren’t any big players in the social media management/marketing space and it was something that every single business out there needed,” he said. “I teamed up with my siblings to create The SocialDrop brand and we have been growing uncontrollably since.”
Hazan’s first big social media client was Pi Co pizza in 2017. Since then The SocialDrop has experienced success during its first year of business gaining over a dozen clients, including the Toronto Parking Authority, Queen Street Warehouse and more.
‘Together we have grown to a team, worked with dozens of big-name businesses and have received incredible feedback on the work we do,” Hazan said.
Hazan’s work with Pi Co led him to open a franchise of his own last year, bringing his love of pizza full circle.
Watch Eden Hazan explain the Pi Co pizza concept:
However, not all that glitters is gold. Although Hazan is living out his dream and following his passion, sometimes being self-employed can get overwhelming.
“All entrepreneurs face the same challenges, however when you multiply the daily responsibilities and stress by three, it can be hard to stay positive. I have had many days where I had to deal with a lot on all three business fronts and I can tell you that by the end of those days I have been mentally, physically and emotionally broken,” said Hazan.
Luckily, he has conjured up his own strategies to tackle the stress of his multiple jobs.
“With proper time management and scheduling I have been able to successfully carry out my responsibilities while actively growing all of my businesses on the daily and making time for myself,” he said.
Following these morals and traditions, The SocialDrop is a direct representation of his brand and the client’s success, which can be seen through his work at Pi Co by both employees and customers.
“He’s a funny guy, chill, young, and he brings a good vibe to work here,” said Ari Tal an employee at Pi Co.
Hazan feels that by taking these steps in the right direction and pushing for more growth his businesses will begin to succeed. He believes that by using his hands to train others is not only a virtue he stands by but will help his business build upwards.
‘”About six months after starting Social Drop we began working with one of our biggest clients to date, Pi Co Pizza and since then I fell in love with the product and brand that I helped build and strengthen … Pizza is literally my life!”
With Hazan having such diverse knowledge and love for pizza he was tackled with the task of answering one of the biggest debates unanswered: does pineapple truly belong on a pizza?
“Yes! If you haven’t tried it before it is a must and will likely change your opinion on the matter!”