Applebee's is one of the nation's largest grill and bar restaurant chains. At the end of 2012, there were 2,034 restaurants in 49 states nationwide, one U.S. territory and 16 countries. Most restaurants are franchised.
The décor of each Applebee's restaurant reflects its local neighborhood by displaying photographs and memorabilia highlighting hometown heroes and history, area schools, and local police and fire departments.
Applebee's offers a full-service lunch and dinner menu. The restaurant's signature items include Sizzling Fajitas, Applebee's Riblets, Oriental Chicken Salad, the House Sirloin and Fiesta Lime Chicken.
The chain has been offering a 2 for $20 menu which includes an appetizer and two entrees for $20 not including tax or gratuity.
There were 34 new restaurant openings in 2012. Applebee's had average weekly sales of $42,000 per location in 2012.
Applebee's is a subsidiary of California-based DineEquity.
Applebee's was founded in Atlanta, GA, by Bill and T.J. Palmer. The Palmers envisioned a restaurant that would provide full service, consistently good food, reasonable prices and quality service in a neighborhood setting. Their first restaurant, T.J. Applebee's Rx for Edibles & Elixirs, opened in November ,1980.
In 1982, the Palmers opened their second Applebee's in Atlanta and in 1983, to fulfill a dream of nationwide expansion, the Palmers sold the Applebee's concept to W. R. Grace and Co. As part of the transaction, Bill Palmer was named president of the Applebee's Division of an indirect subsidiary of W. R. Grace. In that capacity, Palmer guided the operation from its entrepreneurial beginnings to a full-fledged franchise system. He became an Applebee's franchisee in 1985 and today owns more than three dozen Applebee's restaurants.
In 1986, the name of the concept was changed to Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar to reflect the Palmers' original concept of a place people could call their own.
In 1988, Applebee's International, Inc. became the restaurant chain's franchisor when Kansas City franchisees Abe Gustin and John Hamra purchased the rights to the Applebee's concept from W. R. Grace.
The company would go public in 1989.
When Applebee's International, Inc. acquired Applebee's in 1988, there were 54 restaurants. In 1998, Applebee's became the first casual dining concept with 1,000 restaurants.
Applebee's began Carside to Go service in 2004.
Applebee's International was acquired by IHOP on November 29, 2007. The new company changed its name to DineEquity in 2008.
Benefits at Applebee's may vary depending on location and restaurant and part-time and full-time workers.
Updated March 16, 2013