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Applebee's closing up to 135 restaurants because of poor performance

Following a drop in second quarter sales, Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar said it will close more than 100 locations this year, a bigger cut than it had previously forecast.

"We believe 2017 will be a transitional year for Applebee's and we are making the necessary investments for overall long-term brand health," said Richard Dahl, interim CEO of Applebee's parent company DineEquity Inc.

Sales at the Glendale, Calif.-based diner chain dropped 6.2 percent from the same period in 2016, the company reported Thursday.

Earlier, Applebee's planned on closing between 40 and 60 restaurants this year. Now it says it will shutter between 105 and 135 locations.

Specific restaurants have not been identified. Since June 2016, 27 locations around the country have closed.

There are about 20 Applebee's locations in Tampa Bay and 108 across Florida.

Amid the closures, the franchise still plans on opening 20 to 30 new locations, most of which will be international.

The restaurant industry has been in somewhat of a downturn this year as more diners are eating at home instead of going out, according to an April CNBC report.

DineEquity's stock closed Thursday at $38.81 per share, up about 4 percent from Wednesday.

Contact Malena Carollo at mcarollo@tampabay.com or (727) 892-2249. Follow @malenacarollo on Twitter.

Applebee's closing up to 135 restaurants because of poor performance 08/10/17 [Last modified: Friday, August 11, 2017 1:04am]
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