Dine Brands Foundation Announces Support for New Initiative to Catalyze Franchise Ownership Among Underrepresented Groups

New accelerator program from the International Franchise Association seeks to increase franchise business ownership to narrow wealth gap

Dine Brands Foundation today announces its support for the International Franchise Association (IFA)’s new Franchise Ascension Initiative, an accelerator program established to support individuals from underrepresented communities with education, mentorship, resources, and financial support to successfully launch a career in franchise ownership. By increasing diversity in the franchisee talent pipeline, the Ascension Initiative aims to narrow the wealth gap and provide qualified individuals with business ownership opportunities.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20240326600487/en/

(Graphic: Business Wire)

(Graphic: Business Wire)

“Franchising is one of the greatest pathways to business ownership and creating generational wealth,” said Matt Haller, IFA President and CEO. “This program ensures that access to opportunity is available to everyone, regardless of background. What better way to bridge the wealth gap than through opening more doors for minority business owners. With the support of our generous partners like Dine Brands, the Ascension Initiative will further help to change lives and communities through franchising.”

The Dine Brands Foundation pledged $100,000 to launch the effort, which will begin accepting applications in the coming months. The first cohort of participants is expected in late 2024.

“We are proud to announce our financial contribution to support the Franchise Ascension Initiative. Our ongoing support underscores our commitment to creating opportunities in the restaurant industry for a diverse workforce and recruiting franchisees from underrepresented communities to the Dine table,” said John Peyton, Dine Brands chief executive officer.

According to data from Oxford Economics, Black-owned franchises earn 2.2 times more than Black-owned independent businesses; Hispanic-owned franchises earn 1.6 times more than Hispanic-owned independent businesses; and Asian-owned franchises earn 1.4 times more than Asian-owned independent businesses.

The Franchise Ascension Initiative will select capable candidates for a rigorous six-month education program to help them build the essential skills they need to be successful franchisees. Building on IFA’s extensive library of franchise educational materials, the program will be specifically curated for participants, along with individualized mentorship. The program will culminate in a pitch contest with potential franchise opportunities.

The Dine Brands Foundation was established to further strengthen and establish partnerships with community-based nonprofit organizations that address food insecurity and hunger relief, bringing communities together through nutrition education and access, and creating opportunities in the restaurant industry for a diverse workforce. Dine and its brands – Applebee’s, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and IHOP – have been giving back to communities where they operate for decades and remain focused on creating experiences for all stakeholders to dine better, together.

More information on the Ascension Initiative is available here.

About Dine Brands Global, Inc.

Based in Pasadena, California, Dine Brands Global, Inc. (NYSE: DIN), through its subsidiaries and franchisees, supports and operates restaurants under the Applebee's Neighborhood Grill + Bar®, IHOP®, and Fuzzy’s Taco Shop® brands. As of December 31, 2023, these three brands consisted of over 3,500 restaurants across 18 international markets. Dine Brands is one of the largest full-service restaurant companies in the world and in 2022 expanded into the Fast Casual segment. For more information on Dine Brands, visit the Company’s website located at www.dinebrands.com.

About the International Franchise Association:

Celebrating over 60 years of excellence, education, and advocacy, the International Franchise Association (IFA) is the world’s oldest and largest organization representing franchising worldwide. IFA works through its government relations and public policy, media relations, and educational programs to protect, enhance and promote franchising and the approximately 806,270 franchise establishments that support nearly 8.7 million direct jobs, $858.5 billion of economic output for the U.S. economy, and almost 3 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). IFA members include franchise companies in over 300 different business format categories, individual franchisees, and companies that support the industry in marketing, law, technology, and business development.



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