Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza Expands into Greater Tampa Bay Market with Honu Life Enterprises, Inc.

Accomplished Military Veteran Takes Advantage of Discounted Franchise Fee for Veterans

November 11, 2020


St. Petersburg, Florida – November 11, 2020 – Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza, one of the fastest growing wood-fired pizza franchises in the US, announced today that the company will be opening a location in the greater Tampa Bay Area with Honu Life Enterprises, Inc. Local residents, Rod and Cat Scott, are the franchise owners.

Rod spent 32 years in the United States Army as a Military Intelligence and Counterintelligence Special Agent, serving all over the world in various assignments in global security, counter narcotics and counter terrorism. “I was fortunate to be sent to the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, CA. twice during my career, once for Chinese Mandarin and once for Korean,” Rod Said.

As a military veteran, they were eligible for the Veterans Discount provided by Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza off the initial franchise fee. “We feel this is an important aspect of our franchise offering,” said Matt Mongoven, CEO of Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza. “And being able to announce our new Franchisees on Veteran’s Day this year just makes it an extra special event for us.”

Retiring in 2017 as a Lieutenant Colonel, Rod attended and graduated from The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Tampa. “Cat and I searched for something in the culinary field. I volunteered at Food and Wine Festivals, worked in restaurants and traveled the country for a year in an RV. During our 48 state travels, we searched for the best pizza restaurants in each state we visited and found different styles, different shapes, flavors and cooking methods. Upon returning to Florida, I came across the franchise opportunity for Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza. We thought a franchise would be a great way to open a restaurant without all the headaches of starting from ‘scratch’. The thought of wood-fired made the decision even easier, Rod stated.

“We are very excited to welcome Rod and Cat to the Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza family. We are very careful to select the right franchise partners as well as the markets we are expanding to. We quickly recognized the passion that Rod and Cat would bring to their location and look forward to expanding into the Tampa Bay market with them”, said Matt Mongoven, CEO of Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza.

Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza is a fast-casual franchise concept that serves authentic, artisan wood-fired pizzas. All pizzas are customizable and baked in a 900-degree wood-fired oven that cooks the pizzas to perfection in just over 90 seconds.

“Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza offers a product and experience unlike anything in the pizza space,” said Matt Mongoven, CEO and Franchisor of Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza. “We use aged oak in our wood-fired ovens to cook our pizzas which creates a smoky flavor that can’t be replicated with other cooking methods. Visiting our locations provides a unique experience as customers are able to watch their pizza creation being made right in front of them.”

In addition to expanding into the Tampa Bay market, the brand recently opened locations in Colorado and Iowa, and will open in Omaha in early 2021 and additional locations to open later in the year.

For more information on the franchise opportunity, visit

About Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza

Founded in 2009 and franchising since 2017, Smokin’ Oak Wood-Fired Pizza is a fast-casual franchise concept that serves authentic and wood-fired pizzas. All pizzas are baked in a 900-degree wood-fired oven, which cooks pizzas to perfection in just 90 seconds. The brand uses only the freshest ingredients on all its menu items, in fact, none of Smokin’ Oak Pizza’s restaurants have a freezer in them. Customers can customize their own pizza by choosing a variety of Smokin’ Oak Pizza’s 35 toppings or choosing from one of the brand’s 12 Signature Pizzas, which include favorites like the Buffalo Chicken Pizza and the Smokey Dokey. The brand also offers delicious sandwiches, salads, and desserts.