Denny’s says about 82% of U.S. restaurants are back in operation

Family-dining brand’s same-store sales bouncing back from coronavirus low of 80% weekly decline


Ron Ruggless, Nation's Restaurant News 

May 14, 2020


Denny’s Corp. on Wednesday had about 82% of its domestic restaurants operating, most with takeout and delivery, streamlined menus and reduced operating hours, as the brand dealt with coronavirus restrictions, the company said Thursday.


The Spartanburg, S.C.-based family-dining chain, reporting earnings for the first quarter, said domestic same-store sales declined 6.3% in the quarter but had dipped to a low of down 80% in the final week of the period, which ended March 25.


“While the Denny’s brand had a positive start to the year delivering solid sales results through February, the dramatic and sudden impact of COVID-19 and related restrictive government mandates weighed on the final weeks of the fiscal first quarter,” said John Miller, Denny’s CEO, in a statement.


“As restaurant operations were being limited to off-premise sales channels, we implemented streamlined menus, 'Dine-Thru' curbside service programs and shareable family meal packs in a matter of days,” Miller said.


Denny’s also posted same-store sales declines for each of the weeks since the close of the first quarter. They included for the weeks ended: