IHOP Opens First Restaurant in Kuwait, Expanding Brand`s Presence in the Middle East

Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:00am EST

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.


New Restaurant Joins Two Locations in Dubai as Part of a Multi-Restaurant
Franchise Agreement with M.H. Alshaya Company
GLENDALE, Calif.--(Business Wire)--
DineEquity, Inc. (NYSE: DIN), parent company of Applebee's Neighborhood Grill &
Bar® and IHOP® Restaurants, today announced that IHOP, the iconic brand famous
the world over for its pancakes, omelettes and breakfast items as well as
delicious lunch and dinner choices, opened its first location in Kuwait on
February 16th, expanding its presence in the Middle East as part of a
multi-restaurant franchise agreement with M.H. Alshaya Co., a leading
international franchise operator. 

The new restaurant follows the success of two locations in Dubai, which Alshaya
opened in September 2012. Alshaya`s multi-restaurant franchise agreement with
IHOP Franchise Company, LLC, calls for 40 restaurants, with plans to expand to
other countries across the Middle East including Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon,
Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain and Egypt. 

The new Kuwait IHOP restaurant is located at the Grand Avenue, The Avenues, the
largest shopping and entertainment complex in Kuwait. 

"We are delighted to add Kuwait to the list of countries around the world that
can now enjoy the IHOP experience," said Julia Stewart, CEO, DineEquity Inc.
"Alshaya has already done a tremendous job in successfully bringing our brand to
Dubai. We congratulate them on this newest location and look forward to their
future openings as they bring IHOP to even more countries in this thriving

Stephen O`Connor, Vice President, Operations, Casual Dining, Alshaya, added,
"The success of the IHOP story lies in its combination of high food quality,
value and excellent service. As we continue to expand the brand across the
Middle East, we are sure IHOP will become a firm family favorite with customers
in Kuwait, just as it has become in Dubai." 

"As the new IHOP restaurants in Dubai have already proven, there is a strong
appetite throughout the region for great food and service with strong value,"
said John Merkin, Vice President, Operations and International, International
House of Pancakes, LLC. "With the unparalleled regional expertise, operational
capabilities, and marketing knowledge Alshaya provides as our franchisee, we are
confident that their new location in Kuwait will be equally successful." 

IHOP restaurants feature high-quality food and beverage items served in a
friendly, warm and comfortable ambience. This popular restaurant, which is
designed for individual and family dining, delivers a uniquely iconic
American-style dining experience. The sumptuous menu that includes an extensive
array of items ranges from signature pancakes to a wide variety of omelettes,
French toast and waffles, crepes, sandwiches and burgers, appetizers, soups,
salads and desserts. IHOP features a selection of international flavors as well
as dinner favorites and a diverse assortment of lower-calorie, "SIMPLE & FIT"


Based in Glendale, California, DineEquity, Inc., through its subsidiaries,
franchises and operates restaurants under the Applebee`s Neighborhood Grill &
Bar and IHOP brands. With more than 3,500 restaurants combined in 18 countries,
over 400 franchisees and approximately 200,000 team members (including
franchisee- and company-operated restaurant employees), DineEquity is one of the
largest full-service restaurant companies in the world. For more information on
DineEquity, visit the Company's Web site located at www.dineequity.com. 


For 54 years, IHOP has been a leader and expert in all things breakfast and a
leader in family dining. The brand is highly competitive in its menu offering,
serving 65 different signature, made-from-scratch breakfast options as well as a
range of meals under 600 calories. Beyond offering "Everything you love about
breakfast,SM" IHOP has a wide selection of popular lunch and dinner items. IHOP
offers its guests an affordable, everyday dining experience with warm and
friendly service. As of September 30, 2012, there were 1,565 IHOP restaurants in
50 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in Canada, Guatemala, Mexico,
Puerto Rico, the United Arab Emirates, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Under the
licensed name IHOP at HOME®, consumers can also enjoy a line of premium
breakfast products available at leading retailers. IHOP restaurants are
franchised and operated by Glendale, Calif.-based International House of
Pancakes, LLC and its affiliates. International House of Pancakes, LLC is a
wholly-owned subsidiary of DineEquity, Inc. (NYSE: DIN). www.IHOP.com. 


M.H. Alshaya Co. is a leading international franchise operator for over 55 of
the world`s most recognized retail brands, including Starbucks, H&M, Mothercare,
Debenhams, American Eagle Outfitters, Pottery Barn, P.F. Chang`s, Office Depot
and Boots. The company operates over 2,200 stores across 7 divisions: Fashion &
Footwear, Health & Beauty, Food Service, Optics, Pharmacy, Office Supplies and
Home Furnishings. Alshaya`s stores can currently be found in 19 markets across
the Middle East and North Africa, Russia, Turkey and Europe and the company
employs more than 28,000 people from over 90 nationalities. Alshaya has
established itself as the industry leader across these territories through a
combination of local market understanding and a comprehensive commitment to
customer service. Growth in each of its operating divisions and brands is
supported by continuous investment in talent and infrastructure. It applies best
practices in retail operations, merchandising, marketing, information
technology, logistics, real estate, human resources and financial controls. M.H.
Alshaya Co. is the retail business of the Alshaya group of companies, which was
founded in Kuwait in 1890 and today represents one of the most dynamic
businesses in the Middle East. In addition to its retail operations, Alshaya is
active in a number of other sectors including real estate, automotive, hotels,
trading and investments. Learn more about the company at www.alshaya.com.

Craig Hoffman
(818) 637-3603
Wills Communications, Inc.
Terry Wills
(310) 546-1212 

Copyright Business Wire 2013