Spartanburg-based Denny’s will add stores in Guatemala, UK

Spartanburg-based family-dining chain Denny's Corp. has announced the opening of its first store in Guatemala and a franchise agreement that is anticipated to bring 10 of its restaurants to the United Kingdom.

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“America’s Favorite Diner” is growing its international presence.

Spartanburg-based Denny’s Corp. recently announced its first Guatemala restaurant, owned and operated by a Honduran franchisee Comidas Especializadas S. de R.L.

Comidas Especializadas, which operates five stores in Honduras and one store in El Salvador, opened a Denny’s restaurant in Guatemala City at 6 Avenida Boulevar Liberacion near La Aurora Airport.

“We’re excited to continue the growth of the Denny’s brand internationally and execute our goal of being the world’s largest, most admired, and beloved family of local restaurants,” said John Miller, president and CEO of Denny’s in a statement.

Miller described Comidas Especializadas, which is led by Roberto Larach, as “incredible brand ambassadors in Central America,” and credited the company with building “a strong following for Denny’s.”

The Guatemala store, according to Denny’s, is the seventh of at least 10 restaurants Comidas Especializadas plans to open for the family-dining chain in the region. The company also operates 60 Pizza Hut stores and 15 Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in Honduras.

“For years, we have been bringing American restaurant concepts to Central America and are thrilled to share Denny’s with the residents and visitors of Guatemala,” Larach said in a statement. “Denny’s is an outstanding brand, with a great menu and a business model like no other brand in the industry.”

“With restaurants in Honduras and El Salvador, Guatemala was the natural next step in our plan to bring the brand to more guests in the region,” Larach added.

As of Sept. 27, Denny’s said it had 1,725 stores in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico, New Zealand, Honduras, the Philippines, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, the United Arab Emirates, Guam, Curacao, and El Salvador.

On Oct. 19, the company announced it would expand into Europe.

Denny’s said it inked a franchise agreement with Denny’s Magic Diners U.K., led by executive Leon Esfahani.

Esfahani and his company plan to open 10 Denny’s stores across the United Kingdom, with the first expected to open in Swansea, Wales, by the end of the year.

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