Applebee’s International, Inc. is America’s largest casual dining restaurant chain in terms of size and sales, with positive net earnings for the past ten years. It is famed as “America’s Favorite Neighbor” by decorating its restaurants with local themes, such as local heroes, sports teams, and town history.
It is based on a single-concept focus on the Neighborhood Grill and Bar restaurants and has built strength by setting up outlets where big names in the food service industry have not yet been established. It popularizes the Applebee’s brand name by opening small-sized restaurants not far from one another.
Aside from its dine-in program, it now has Carside To Go which allows customers to take out their orders. It has also improved its menu by teaming with Weight Watchers International and offering Weight Watchers selections. Under the leadership of Lloyd L. Hill, who became chief executive officer in 1998, the company has posted positive net earnings, despite a fluctuating growth trend in total operating revenues in the past ten years.
In the past, the company has faced legal entanglements that it had always dealt with promptly. It maintains close relationship with its franchisees and instills in its employees, the company’s core values embodied in the acronym BIG Fun TRIP (balance between work and home life, innovation, a guest-driven attitude, the ability to have fun, teamwork, a results-driven business approach, integrity and a passion for service).
With over 1,800 restaurants nationwide and consistently good revenues, Applebee’s is considered an industry leader and it seeks to increase its size to 3,000 restaurants in the future.
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