Applebee's is a chain of restaurants owned and operated by Applebee's Services, Inc.. They were founded in 1980 by Bill and TJ Palmer in Atlanta Georgia. They are headquartered in Lenexa, Kansas and employ approximately 28,000 people company-wide. Applebees restaurants are operated in 49 states, and 15 countries world wide. Applebee's company slogan is "There's No Place Like The Neighborhood". They are the largest casual dining chain in the world, posting annual sales numbers of $4.7 billion in 2008.http://www.applebees.com/AtAGlance.aspx
Many of the Applebees restaurants are franchised. In order to be a franchise owner, one must pay a $40,000 franchise fee, and 4% in gross sales royalties for the first 24 months. After the first 24 months, Applebees holds the right to increase royalties to 5%. There is also a a requirement to spend at least 3.5% of gross sales on local marketing, advertising, and public relations.http://www.applebees.com/iRequirements.aspx
Applebee's Menu Items
Nearly every lunch and dinner plate is served with a side.
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Applebee's was originally founded by Bill and TJ Palmer in 1980, who started the store out as a prescription store called T.J. Applebee's Rx. In 1983 they sold the concept to W.R. Grace and Company. In 1985 Bill Palmer, the principal owner of Cafe Ventures, became the first ever Applebee's franchise. One year later he would help change the name to Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar. Another pair named Abe Gustin and John Hamra would open their own franchise in Kansas City in 1986, and just two years later would purchase the rights to the Applebee's concept from W.R. Grace and Company. One year later Applebee's International, Inc. would go public for the first time and open it's 100th restaurant.
By 1994 there were more than 500 Applebee's restaurants, and in 1997 that number had almost doubled to 960 restaurants. In 1998 Applebee's opened it's 1,000 restaurant in Aurora, Colorado. That year Abe Gustin, who was then the Co-CEO and CFO retired.
In 1999 Applebee's posted a system-wide record $2.35 billion in sales, and by 2000 the number of restaurants had increased to over 1,250. In 2004 Applebee's introduced the Weight Watchers menu, as well as the Carside To-Go service where customers have the option of calling ahead and having their meal delivered to them in their car outside of the restaurant.http://www.applebees.com/History.aspx
In 2007, Applebee's Services, Inc. is purchased by IHOP Corp, creating the largest full-service restaurant company in the world. That same year, the first Applebee's location in China was opened.http://www.applebees.com/History.aspx
In 2008, Applebee's, along with IHOP, became part of DineEquity, Inc. and was recieved the Best Chain Responsible Beverage Alcohol Service Training Program award from the ServSafe Alcohol Awards. The same year, Michael J. Archer is named president of the company.http://www.applebees.com/History.aspx
In 2009 and 2010, Applebee's offered a Veterans Day meal free of charge for any U.S. veterans that visited one of the nationwide stores on November 11. Veterans chose from a select list of meals including bacon burgers, double crunch shrimp and oriental house salad.http://www.applebees.com/