Chicago’s biggest name in basketball and the city’s most beloved maker of Chicago-style stuffed pizza announced today a first-of-its-kind partnership that is expected to be a slam-dunk among sports and culinary fans alike.  Lifelong Chicagoan and MVP point guard Derrick Rose has teamed up with Giordano’s Famous Stuffed Pizza as an equity owner and new national spokesperson of the legendary pizza company.

A staple among Chicagoans and visitors since 1974, Giordano’s has been called “the best pizza in Chicago” by visitors and locals alike and attracts a loyal following nationwide. Now D-Rose fans are going to add the word “D-Licious” to their vocabulary when describing their favorite pizza which is sold at 40 Chicago-area restaurants and shipped coast-to-coast online at giordanos.com.

Beginning later this month, the pro basketball star will begin appearing in Giordano’s advertising, consumer promotions and charitable efforts as the company broadens its national profile and expands its menu offerings to enhance the overall consumer experience.

Led by Richard Levy, Chicago-based private equity firm Victory Park Capital Advisors LLC acquired Giordano’s in late 2011 as the company began a wide scale re-introduction of the iconic brand. Through this new relationship, Rose will play an active role in helping bring the legendary Giordano’s experience to even more consumers as the company plans to launch an expansive new menu later this fall featuring a wide variety of stuffed and thin crust pizzas, as well as inventive new salads, sandwiches, pastas and desserts.

“Derrick Rose is indisputably the best player in basketball today and we’re honored to now call him a part of our team,” said Yorgo Koutsogiorgas, President and CEO of Giordano’s. “Our customers have been telling us for decades that we’re the best stuffed pizza in the world and we just scored another great win for Chicago by adding Derrick Rose to our lineup. He’s really looking forward to helping us grow this great company.”

The partnership makes Rose the first nationally-recognized athlete and celebrity spokesperson to align with the iconic pizza company in its nearly 40-year history.

“I’m proud to call Chicago my hometown and I’ve grown up with my family eating Giordano’s pizza,” said Derrick Rose. “I’ve always loved Giordano’s, so this was a uniquely personal opportunity for me.”

In addition to various promotions featuring Rose, throughout the year, sports fans might even get a chance to spot the MVP around town at one of Giordano’s Chicagoland locations. Rose plans to visit the various restaurants and, of course, order up his favorite varieties that feature the very best, fresh ingredients.

“I’ve always been a big fan of their stuffed pizzas,” said Rose. “I’m working right now on my own signature pizza that we plan to introduce very soon. I’m actually pretty good in the kitchen.”

About Giordano’s:
Based in Chicago, Illinois, Giordano’s Famous Stuffed Pizza has been serving their world-famous pizza since 1974, when founders and immigrants, brothers Efren and Joseph Boglio, became discouraged by the lack of authentic pizza available in the Chicago area.  Becoming one of the originators of what is now internationally known as Chicago-style stuffed pizza, Giordano’s has 40 locations throughout the Chicagoland area and is also available for shipping anywhere in the continental United States by visiting www.giordanos.com <http://www.giordanos.com> . Follow us on Twitter at @giordanospizza and on Facebook at GiordanosPizzeria.