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Denny's Corp. names Pankaj Patra as chief digital and technology officer.

Denny’s names Pankaj Patra as chief digital and technology officer

New position will support diner brand and Keke’s in IT

Denny’s Corp. has named Pankaj Patra to the new position of chief digital and technology officer, the company said Friday.

The Spartanburg, S.C.-based owner of the diner and Keke’s Breakfast Café brands said Patra will identify new technology solutions for its divisions and will start the new role Oct. 30.

Michael Furlow, Denny’s executive vice president and chief information officer, will remain on staff through the end of the year to support the transition, the company said.

“Our restaurant teams and our guests rely on technology to enable a seamless experience, which makes the work that our IT team does absolutely critical,” said Kelli Valade, Denny’s CEO, in a statement.

“We are excited to add Pankaj to the team to help us build on the solid foundation already in place, while leading us in identifying new, relevant and innovative solutions to serve our guests, employees and franchisees in the future,” Valade added.

Prior to Denny’s, Patra served as chief information officer at Dallas-based Brinker International Inc., parent to the Chili’s Grill & Bar brand, where he oversaw information technology and data security for the company and its restaurant brands.

“Denny’s is an iconic restaurant company that understands and values the connection between great people and smart technology,” Patra said. “I am looking forward to working collaboratively across the company to identify opportunities for improvement and implement exciting, innovative, transformative solutions.”

Denny’s as of June 28 had 1,591 restaurants, 1,525 of which were franchised and licensed restaurants and 66 of which were company operated. The Keke’s daytime breakfast brand, which it acquired in 2022, had 55 units, 47 of which were franchised.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected]

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