PizzaExpress is a restaurant group with over 400 restaurants across the United Kingdom and 40 overseas in Europe, Hong Kong, India and the Middle East. It was founded in 1965 by Peter Boizot. In July 2014 the group was sold to the China-based private equity firm Hony Capital in a deal worth £900 million ($1.54 billion).
Founded in 1965 by Peter Boizot, PizzaExpress opened its first restaurant in London's Wardour Street. Inspired by a trip to Italy, Boizot brought back to London a pizza oven from Naples and a chef from Sicily.
In 1969 jazz performances began at its Dean Street restaurant, London.
In 1995, PizzaExpress expanded into Ireland and currently operates 14 restaurants there under the brand name Milano. The company also owns the brand name Marzano. Originally Marzano was used in countries where the brand name Pizza Express was not available, as with the use of the name Milano in Ireland, but it also exists in some territories, such as Cyprus, to differentiate between the restaurants selling primarily pizza and those offering a wider range of non-pizza meals inspired by Italy. It is also used for a cafe-bar run as an adjunct to the branch of Pizza Express in The Forum in Norwich, "Cafe Bar Marzano".