IHOP is set to shut down almost 100 restaurant branches in the next six months, Dine Brands Global - the pancake house and breakfast chain's mother company - announced during its third quarter earnings report Thursday.
The planned closures, expected to take place over the next six months, come as the global health emergency continues to impact indoor dining businesses across the U.S.
"Given the impact of the pandemic on individual restaurant-level economics, the company is examining the viability of underperforming domestic IHOP restaurants," Dine Brands disclosed in its third quarter report.
The coronavirus pandemic has previously forced many IHOP branches to close earlier this year, but since pandemic restrictions have eased, many of the locations have reopened.
The breakfast chain currently operates 1,683 restaurants, and 35 have been closed so far this year. Applebee's, also owned by Dine Brands Global, will shutter at least 15 restaurants before end of 2020.
According to a company representative, the closures will enable Dine Brands to "remain focused on continuing to close the gap on sales...ensuring restaurant safety and providing compelling value and innovation," People quoted the company as saying in a statement.
Sales at both IHOP and Applebee's have climbed almost every week starting July through September, the company disclosed in its sales report. However, it is still trying to bounce back from the 40% slump it suffered earlier this year. To contain this, 15 Applebee's franchisees will close for good before the year ends.
Sales of IHOP from its online orders accounted for 22% of total revenues for the third quarter, down from nearly 35% of total sales for the second quarter.
Meanwhile, IHOP and Applebee's are not the only restaurant chains that are impacted by the virus.
The Cheesecake Factory and Outback Steakhouse are among the restaurants facing the possibility of defaulting on their financial obligations, an August report by S&P Global Market Intelligence showed.