Flynn Restaurant Group, the world’s largest franchise operator, today announced it contributed more than $9.5 million in charitable and food donations across its brands – Applebees, Panera Bread, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Wendy’s and Arby’s – through numerous national and local fundraising campaigns in 2022.
“We are proud to announce we have donated over $9.5 million through national and local fundraising campaigns across our six franchise concepts in 2022,” says Greg Flynn, founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Flynn Restaurant Group. “As a part of every community we serve, it is our responsibility to go above and beyond as an employer and a restaurant business. We do so by serving great food in a friendly environment and being an active participant in supporting important causes. We thank our incredible team members and guests for their generous contributions and look forward to hosting additional fundraising campaigns in 2023.”
Guests who visited restaurants owned and operated by Flynn Restaurant Group in 2022 participated in fundraisers benefiting local schools and charities, such as Dine to Donates and Flapjack Fundraisers, by purchasing limited-time menu items matching donation funds and rounding up at the register. Six franchisees within Flynn Restaurant Group that helped raise funds include:
Apple American Group, Applebee’s largest franchisee, raised over $1.3 million in 2022. Proceeds benefitted, Muscular Dystrophy Association, Jimmy Fund, Special Olympics, various local non-profit and school organizations and longtime partner, Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. “Apple American Group is one of ALSF’s first partners, and over the years, their commitment to the cause has only grown. Their prominence and national reach have helped to introduce countless people over the years to ALSF and raised more than $6 million in the fight against childhood cancer,” says Liz Scott, Alex’s mom and Co-Executive Director of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. “We are truly grateful for their continued partnership to help find cures and support families during their child’s treatment and beyond.” In recognition of these efforts, the franchise group was honored by Applebee’s Restaurants, Inc. as the Lloyd Hill Neighbor of the Year, as well as Applebee’s Operator of the Year and Culinary Partner of The Year. The franchisee also celebrated with their team member, Emily Canady from Highland, CA, who was awarded Restaurant General Manager of the Year.
Pan American Group, Panera Bread’s second largest franchisee, donated $5.3 million in bakery products from local cafes in 2022, along with nearly $240,000 in monetary donations. Proceeds benefitted Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, Young Women’s Breast Cancer Awareness Foundation, Cancer Bridges, West Virginia Breast Health Initiative, University of Kansas Cancer Center, Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center, UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, American Cancer Society, American Red Cross and The Salvation Army.
Bell American Group, Taco Bell’s second largest franchisee, raised over $1 million through the Taco Bell Foundation’s Round Up program. With each transaction, guests had the chance to round to the nearest dollar, ultimately supporting communities and youth nationwide with scholarships and educational experiences.
Wend American Group, Wendy’s fifth largest franchisee, raised more than $785,500 in 2022. Hosting over 140 fundraising campaigns, the brand’s donations primarily supported the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.
Hut American Group, the largest Pizza Hut franchisee, raised over $403,500, benefitting the Pizza Hut Foundation and First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise that provides new books, learning materials, and other essentials to children in need.
RB American Group, Arby’s largest franchisee, raised over $318,500 in 2022. A portion of the proceeds benefitted the Arby’s Foundation’s “Make A Difference Campaign,” which supports youth leadership and career readiness initiatives while combatting childhood hunger. On a local level, charitable campaigns benefitted Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, Arkansas Children’s Foundation, Camp Destination Innovation, Little Light House, Giant Steps of St. Louis, UMPS CARE, two food banks – Mulberry Community Food Pantry and Food Bank of Kansas, and numerous community non-profit organizations.
In addition to funds raised by Flynn Restaurant Group’s six brands, the franchise operator also raised over $1.15 million to benefit 859 employees through the Flynn Family Fund – an employee funded donation program embodying the idea of people helping people, focusing on assisting employees of the Flynn Restaurant Group while they are going through emergency or crisis situations. Since its 2015 inception, the Flynn Family Fund has given $6.48 million in personal grants to over 4,700 employees.