- IHOP said on Monday that it had changed its name to IHOb to promote the debut of its new burgers.
- Chains including Wendy’s, Burger King, and Whataburger have slammed the move.
- “If we have other people in the world of burgers commenting on our burgers, it can only help,” IHOP’s president told Business Insider.
IHOP’s rebrand as IHOb – the International House of Burgers – has some rival chains slamming the pancake giant.
Last week, IHOP, the International House of Pancakes, announced it would change its name to IHOb, flipping the “P” to a “b.” On Monday, IHOP announced that the “b” stood for burgers, sparking some backlash from other burger brands.
The announcement went viral, with customers freaking out over the rise of the burger over their beloved pancakes. And other fast-food chains were eager to get in on the action, roasting IHOP on social media.
IHOP’s president, Darren Rebelez, told Business Insider on Monday that he was unconcerned by other chains’ jabs. While he said he hadn’t seen much of what the other burger brands had to say on Twitter, he considered the sass part of a successful campaign to relaunch burgers at IHOP.
“It’s actually great,” Rebelez said. “If we have other people in the world of burgers commenting on our burgers, it can only help.”
Here’s how other fast-food chains – and a few brands outside the restaurant industry – responded to the viral IHOb announcement.
- Wendy’s Twitter
Wendy’s tweeted sarcastically on Monday, “Can’t wait to try a burger from the place that decided pancakes were too hard.”
IHOP – or IHOb – responded: “We don’t want any beef with you, we just want to share our beef with the world.”
Wendy’s also tweeted what appeared to be a snide comment on IHOP’s name change.
“Remember when you were like 7 and thought changing your name to Thunder BearSword would be super cool?” it said. “Like that, but our cheeseburgers are still better.”
- Burger King
Later Monday, Burger King also rolled out a new name: Pancake King.
The burger chain, which serves pancakes for breakfast, changed its name on its social-media channels and updated photos to put more emphasis on pancakes instead of its famous Whoppers.
When one Twitter user asked whether Burger King had a grill that IHOb could borrow, “Pancake King” responded with a Taylor Swift-inspired allusion to its new identity.
“Sorry, old Burger King can’t come to the phone right now…” the chain tweeted – a clear reference to Swift’s song “Look What You Made Me Do.”
- A&W Restaurants
“Inspired by the International House of Burgers announcement, we are also changing our name,” A&W Restaurants tweeted with an image of an upside-down logo. “(Please do not ask what it means – we don’t know either.)”
Steak ‘n Shake
- Steak N Shake
Steak ‘n Shake took aim at the reason for the name change, tweeting: “A replica by definition cannot be as good as the original. The original #Steakburger was created by Steak ‘n Shake in 1934.”
The message behind the IHOb madness is the launch of the chain’s Ultimate Steakburgers, a seven-burger lineup that includes options like the Big Brunch Burger, the Cowboy BBQ Burger, and the double-decker Mega Monster Burger. For a limited time, the burgers are available at IHOP locations with unlimited fries and a drink starting at $6.99.
- Chili’s Twitter
Chili’s posted a video of its burger in response to IHOP’s announcement.
“We don’t usually throw shade, but seriously?” the chain tweeted. “That’s what all that was about?”
- Waffle House Twitter
Waffle House seemed ready to subtweet, coming out with a promise that it would stay away from burger-centric rebrands.
“Long-term consistency trumps short-term intensity. – Bruce Lee,” the brand tweeted.
- Red Robin
“We’re as serious about pancakes as @IHOb is about burgers,” Red Robin tweeted, along with a link to the chain’s burger menu. Red Robin does net sell pancakes.
- Whataburger Twitter
The Texas-based burger chain promised it wouldn’t follow in IHOP’s footsteps.
“As much as we love our pancakes, we’d never change our name to Whatapancake,” the chain posted on Twitter.
- White Castle
“We are excited to announce that we will be switching our name to Pancake Castle,” the chain tweeted.
While it’s not a fast-food chain, MoonPie wasn’t a fan of the IHOb rebrand from a marketing standpoint.
“We’ve worked really hard for like 100 years to get people to remember our brand name so if it’s cool with everyone we’re just going to stick with MoonPie thank you,” the treat brand tweeted.
- Hot Pockets
Hot Pockets decided to invent a sloppy new logo based on the IHOb news.
The brand tweeted: “Bocket like it’s hot.”
Everything you need to know about IHOb:
- IHOP has revealed why it changed its name to IHOb, and it represents a massive new strategy for the chain
- IHOP’s decision to change its name to IHOb has been brewing for more than a year
- ‘The pancakes aren’t going anywhere’: IHOP’s president tells customers not to panic over the chain’s IHOb rebrand
- IHOP has revealed the reason behind its big name change, and some people are disappointed
- IHOP changed its name to IHOb to celebrate burgers, but now lots of people are craving pancakes