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APPLEBEE'S ANNOUNCES SYSTEM SALES INCREASES; DISCUSSES RESTAURANT OPENING POTENTIAL, AT FRANCHISING CONVENTION

 OVERLAND PARK, Kan., Oct. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- In a congratulatory speech to franchisees, at the opening this morning of Applebee's franchising convention in Kansas City, Mo., Chairman and CEO Abe J. Gustin Jr. of Applebee's International, Inc., (NASDAQ: APPB) announced that total sales for the Applebee's system during the first nine months of 1993 have exceeded total system sales for all of 1992.
 For the first nine months of 1993, Applebee's total system sales were $436.2 million, compared with $290.9 million for the comparable period last year, and $404.2 million for all of 1992. For the third quarter ended Sept. 26, 1993, total system sales were $162.4 million, an increase of 49 percent over $109.1 million in last year's third quarter. System sales include franchisee sales as reported to Applebee's International, as well as sales of company-owned or operated restaurants.
 Gustin also told the franchisees that he expects to end 1993 with at least 350 Applebee's restaurants open system-wide, compared with 250 at the end of 1992. Of the new restaurants expected this year, 12 to 14 will be company owned. Gustin said, "If we work hard, open restaurants on schedule, and meet the regulatory and operational issues facing us, then our vision for Applebee's future can include sustained growth of 100 restaurants a year, eventually reaching over 1,200 restaurants system-wide. On our current sales and unit growth curve, we can expect Applebee's restaurants to reach $1 billion in total annual system sales in the next two years, and at least $1.5 billion in annual sales in five years."
 Through the third quarter of 1993, Applebee's system-wide comparable restaurant sales, including both franchisee restaurants and company- owned and operated restaurants, increased 9.4 percent over the same period in 1992. For the third quarter of 1993, system-wide comparable sales were up 7.8 percent over the third quarter of 1992.
 "Through the first nine months of this year our annualized average sales have been over $2.1 million per restaurant," Gustin said. "Many of our established restaurants are reaching their maximum sales capacity, which will make future comparable restaurant sales statistics less meaningful than the new restaurant opening potential of the total Applebee's system."
 In a further development, Applebee's also announced that Bell Atlantic Capital Corporation of Paramus, N.J., has agreed to make $25 million of short-term construction financing available to Applebee's franchisees for use in the continued expansion of the Applebee's system nationwide. The construction financing will be made available as a part of the existing long-term financing pool of up to $75 million.
 As of the date of this release, there are 326 Applebee's restaurants open in 38 states. The company plans to release its financial results for the quarter ended Sept. 26, 1993, later this month.
 Applebee's International, Inc., headquartered in Overland Park, Kan., develops, franchises and operates a rapidly expanding national chain of restaurants under the trademark Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar.
 -0- 10/14/93
 /CONTACT: Jack Falker of Swenson/Falker Associates Inc., Minneapolis, 612-371-0000, for Applebee's; or George Shadid or Sue Carroll of Applebee's International, 913-967-4000/
 (APPB)


CO: Applebee's International ST: Kansas IN: LEI SU: ERP

BM -- CL018 -- 2098 10/14/93 10:06 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 14, 1993
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