IHOP (US: // EYE-hop; acronym for International House of Pancakes) is an American multinational pancake house restaurant chain that specializes in breakfast foods. It is owned by Dine Brands Global—a company formed after IHOP's purchase of Applebee's, with 99% of the restaurants run by independent franchisees.
|Founded||July 7, 1958|
Toluca Lake, Los Angeles, California
|Founders||Jerry Lapin, Al Lapin Jr. and Albert Kallis|
|Headquarters||Glendale, California, U.S.|
Number of locations
|1,822 (March 31, 2019)|
|Jay Johns, President|
|Products||Breakfast foods, Lunch, Dinner, Sandwiches|
Number of employees
|Parent||Dine Brands Global|
While IHOP's focus is on breakfast foods, it also offers a menu of lunch and dinner items. The company has 1,822 locations worldwide, including 159 that are owned by area licensees and 1,663 that are franchised. While many of its locations are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, the chain's minimum operating hours are 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Jerry Lapin, Al Lapin, and Albert Kallis founded International House of Pancakes in 1958 with the help of Sherwood Rosenberg and William Kaye. The first restaurant opened in Toluca Lake, Los Angeles, California.
The initial design for IHOP building was a steep-roofed A-frame building with a distinctive blue roof, the last such location to be built was completed in 1979. While most IHOP locations no longer use the A-frame buildings, several still exist around the U.S.
In 1973, the chain's name was shortened to "IHOP" for marketing purposes, using a cartoon kangaroo in its commercials at the time, and since then the full name and acronym have been officially interchangeable.
The breakfast food menu later expanded (especially in the 1980s) to include standard lunch and dinner items found in similar restaurant chains such as Sambo's and Denny's. In 1976, at the same time as reorganization International Industries became IHOP. In December 2019, IHOP announced plans to launch a chain of fast casual breakfast restaurants called Flip'd.
Acquisition of Applebee's
On July 16, 2007, IHOP Corporation announced a plan to acquire the bar-and-grill chain Applebee's in an all-cash transaction, valued at approximately US$2.1 billion. In the arrangement, Applebee's stock holders will receive $25.50 a share. IHOP stated it would franchise most of Applebee's 500 company-owned facilities. Applebee's had 1,943 restaurants worldwide at the time, including those operated by franchisees.
Applebee's shareholders approved the acquisition with a 70% vote, which closed on November 29, 2007. A number of executives from Applebee's voted against the offer. The chain's largest individual shareholder, Applebee's director Burton "Skip" Sack, called the IHOP offer unfair to its shareholders and stated he planned to take IHOP to court to demand a higher price be paid to him. As part of the purchase, a brand remarketing scheme and revitalization of the Applebee's image was intended. The buyout successfully closed on November 29, 2007, and the corporate entity IHOP changed its name to DineEquity on June 2, 2008. A franchisee opened a hybrid Applebee's/IHOP restaurant in downtown Detroit in mid-2018.
Franchising agreements with M.H. Alshaya, an international restaurant-franchising firm, resulted in an agreement for Alshaya to open as many as forty IHOP locations in the Middle East, beginning in 2012. By the end of 2018, IHOP restaurants operated in six Middle Eastern countries: Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Lebanon. In 2019, IHOP began its foray into South America, opening 3 locations in Ecuador.
IHOP Express' first location opened in 2011, they are a quick service version of the chain offered at locations such as airports, school campuses, military food courts and travel centers. The first standalone public location of the concept opened in downtown San Diego in 2011.
In June 2015, IHOP introduced an updated logo, removing its decorative elements and adding a curved line under the "O" and "P" letters to resemble a smiley face. The company argued that the previous logo looked too much like a frown
In June 2018, an IHOP marking campaign announced they would "flip" their name to "IHOb"; it was ultimately revealed to be a marketing campaign for its hamburgers, in an effort to address perceptions that IHOP was still primarily oriented towards breakfast food. The tease of the campaign led to speculation via social media regarding the intent of the change. IHOP parodied the campaign the following year, stating that they would refer to their burgers as "pancakes" because people wanted IHOP to "stick to pancakes", and also introducing a new hamburger that includes a pancake as an ingredient.
In early September 2010, IHOP filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles against International House of Prayer and six other defendants alleging trademark dilution and infringement. The lawsuit was dropped on December 21, 2010, with the dispute resolved out of court.
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