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Saturday, May 21, 2022

Dine Brands, Builder to Open 15 IHOPs in Toronto

Dine Brands International has entered into a franchising agreement with construction firm Minhas Holdings, headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, to bring more than a dozen IHOP diners to the Toronto market. The deal by the Glendale restaurateur will see 15 IHOP locations built over the next seven years, with the first slated to open in mid-2020. The campaign is projected to create about 900 jobs and contribute $15 million to Toronto’s construction industry. The partners have not disclosed exactly where the restaurants will be located. Canada was Dine Brands’ first international market for IHOP, with the brand’s first non-U.S. restaurant opening in British Columbia community New Westminster in 1969 — making this IHOP’s 50th year in the country. “Canada is a great strategic business choice for expansion outside of the U.S. for many reasons including geographic proximity and great brand awareness,” said William Urrego, Dine Brands vice president of international operations, in a statement. “We are interested in further expanding our presence in Canada and we are looking for great partners to take that step with us.” Chief Executive Steve Joyce added that the local presence and market knowledge of the franchisee Saeed Minhas, chief executive of Minhas Holdings, was a major factor in Dine Brands’ decision to expand in Toronto. “In addition to his work as a real-estate developer, Saeed has valuable experience in the hospitality industry as a franchisee for Marriott and IHG,” Joyce said in the statement. Dine Brands also owns Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar. In total it has more than 3,600 restaurants in 18 countries and about 370 franchisees. The agreement with Minhas is IHOP’s second expansion deal in Canada this year. In April, Dine Brands partnered with hospitality franchisee Corey Craig Group, based in Moncton, New Brunswick, to open the first five IHOP restaurants in Canada’s North Atlantic provinces of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, over the next six years. The first is expected to open in Moncton this December. The Corey Craig Group is also a franchisee of coffee chain Tim Horton’s, burger chain Wendy’s and hotel chains Hyatt Place and Holiday Inn Express & Suites. This year has been a big one for international expansion by Dine Brands: since March, the company also signed deals to open 19 IHOP restaurants in Pakistan, 25 in Peru and 12 in Ecuador.

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