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Denny’s Corp. says restaurant same-store sales still down 40%

Weekly figures improve as more dining rooms reopen

Sales are improving each week at Denny’s Corp.’s family-dining restaurants, but they still lag well behind last year’s levels, the company based in Spartanburg, S.C., said Tuesday.

For the week ended June 10, domestic same-store sales at the chain were down by 40% compared to the same week last year, up from -47% the week before and -79% for the week ended April 1, two weeks after dining rooms of most restaurants across the country were ordered to be closed to help prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The parent company said most restaurants were still operating with streamlined menus and reduced operating hours, but 1,234 of its approximately 1,550 domestic restaurants now had opened dining rooms — many with limited capacity of 25%-60% and others with social distancing requirements mandated by state and local authorities.


Just 11 dining rooms were open on April 29. That number increased to 967 on May 27.

As of June 10, 93 domestic restaurants and 14 international locations remained temporarily closed, Denny’s Corp. said.

Off-premise sales, which more than doubled between February and April as delivery fees were waived, curbside pickup was offered and new family meal bundles were introduced, remain high, but not as high as they were at the end of April. The parent company said restaurants have retained more than 90% of the increase so far during June.

To help franchisees, who operate more than 95% of Denny’s locations, Denny’s Corp. has agreed to a one-time $3 million royalty abatement systemwide for the second quarter of 2020. It also has deferred or abated rent at more than 77% of restaurants that Denny’s Corp. leases to franchisees.

Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected] 

Follow him on Twitter: @foodwriterdiary

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