Red Lobster

Red Lobster Restaurants To Close

By Jay Casteel   /   Published 12/23/2013

R.I.P. Red Lobster. The seafood restaurant chain is reportedly closing up shop.

According to New York Times, its parent company Darden Restaurants announced Thursday (Dec. 19) that Red Lobster is planning to execute "a tax-free spin-off" or sell of the franchise completely.

Apparently, investors and analysts have pressured Darden about its future and how it planned to bring back consumers after the recession. Though it's one of the biggest companies in the casual dining industry, with a market value of $6.7 billion, its core chains -- Red Lobster being its first -- have had stagnant growth.

Red Lobster has 705 restaurants in the U.S. and Canada, and had annual sales of about $2.6 billion in the company's 2013 fiscal year.

It's unclear when the locations would begin closing or changing at press time.

In addition to Red Lobster's closure, Darden also plans to halt expansion at its core Olive Garden chain, and slowing down opening new locations for LongHorn Steakhouse.

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  • Daniel Rojas

    it's being spun off or sold. not shut down

  • lola lovely la’shaun

    oh lord please let me have the shell fish again before they close...

  • Cathy

    maybe they should make the portions smaller, as both of them pile the food on your plate, in a nation of obese citizens...

  • Merry Warnell

    you guys SUCK !!! that's my daughters and my FAVORITE restaurant!!!!!!! BOOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!!!!!!!!!

  • Kenneth Busler

    Every time I go to Red Lobster, I get the same thing...diarrhea.
    Red Lobster is to Seafood as McDonald's is to steak.

  • MareCadTITANIC

    Those biscuits, I LOVE them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Fred Smith

    You can get those biscuits from Swans, where they get them from.

  • mike

    Notice nowhere did it say Red Lobster was "losing" money. It just isn't making enough to satisfy it's investors. Sad state of affairs in todays world, when an ROI dictates a long standing institute being shut down. I wonder how much Darden makes off of RL. I'm guessing somewhere between 6-8%. That used to be good enough. Now, if it isn't 15% or more, it's "stagnant". Yeah right. Greed will eventually shut down all medium tier profitable companies.

  • Paul Salerno

    Does this mean no more $100 dinners for a party of two?

  • fishy food

    So called seafood. it sucks

  • kittydove

    yes, shut down for the spinoff or sale

  • Scott

    Probably bought out by Cerner Corp and will be shut down, everyone will lose their jobs with 1 days notice, and the Cerner yuppies will sip champagne and eat caviar overlooking LaJolla, CA sunset view and giggle about how they "Did another deal"!

  • cheapo

    Good, they are to damn expensive for me. Always want to go to one of them but could never really afford them.

  • Ron D

    You can buy the Red Lobster cheddar biscuit mix at Walmart and fix the biscuits at home!

  • Carole

    I am so bummed out. Shrimp Scampi, my favorite of all time. I first had it at a Red Lobster. I try to make them and the biscuits at home, but they never taste as good. I hope they are spun off and not sold. Also remain the same--food wise.

  • Patrick

    Expeicive but good food. I'll miss it.

  • guest99

    Adios Red Lobster.
    You should have concentrated on preparing GOOD seafood, instead of concentrating on volume.

  • jay elemos

    well i guess i have to go to long john's now

  • KevinPS

    Where in the NY Times article -- or anywhere else for that matter -- does it say that Red Lobster locations will be "shutting down"? Do you not understand that spinning off Red Lobster does not mean that Red Lobster restaurants are closing?

  • fergman300

    Over the last 2 years, I gave our location in Grand Junction 3 chances.....epic fail everytime. Salty mushy expensive....onetime, they were out of bisquits for the whole meal....then offered some with the desert menu......that was the end for me, Good riddens..... I remember my first time eating at Red Lobster in Kansas City back in the 70's....they were excellent.

  • Steffy93

    Who writes the stuff? They reference a story from the NY Times, but change the story?? Red Lobster is not closing.
    NY Times headline-
    Red Lobster to Be Split From Darden’s Empire

  • BOB

    THIS PLACE SHOULD CLOSE BECAUSE THE FOOD IS NO LONGER ANY GOOD. WHEN THEY USED AND COOKED FOOD FROM THE MENUS THAT THEY USED WHEN IT WAS FIRST OPENED, IT WAS VERY GOOD....BUT NOW MANAGEMENT HAS RUINED THE BUSINESS.....TRYING TO CUT CORNERS WITH THE MENU AND POOR QUALITY COOKING....THE PAST THREE TIMES I TRIED TO EAT IN ONE OF THEIR PLACES THE FOOD WAS AWFUL....IT WAS SENT BACK TWICE AND STILL NO GOOD....THE PEOPLE AT THE TOP ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS HAPPENING AND SHOULD BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE.

  • Suzanne Rosenorn

    Red Lobster is my favorite Restaurant. I always go there for my birthdays and other celebrations.

  • DIANNE BREWER

    Oh I love Red Lobster biscuits too. THEY ARE THE BEST! DID YOU SEE TITANIC THE OTHER NIGHT? I will definitely have to visit Red Lobster before the fiscal cliff! God Bless us one and all.

  • DIANNE BREWER

    Oh I love Red Lobster biscuits too. THEY ARE THE BEST! DID YOU SEE TITANIC THE OTHER NIGHT? I will definitely have to visit them before the fiscal cliff.

  • wrycooter

    ha ha made ya look
    yahoo is turning into that annoying kid that nobody likes

  • Truthteller

    Any states or cities on the coasts already know that there are much better, local options for REAL seafood with LARGE portions and higher quality with much lower sodium! Red Lobster is a joke of a seafood place here on the east coast and I imagine, the west and gulf coasts too.

  • Fred

    Well, my experience with Red Lobster and Longhorn Steakhouse is that the food is terrible and the service is absolutely horrific. They probably should close but you'd think Darden would be more interested in fixing the problem instead of selling it to someone else. In the end, however, it doesn't matter to me because I have stopped visiting those restaurant disasters a long time ago.

  • Marie DeLaney

    what does that mean?

  • dinky

    the problem with red lobster is the quality of food and amount served has dropped over the years. you use to get fresh crabs and a pound was a pound, now it should be weighted when ordered. the crabs have beed frozen for so long when you try to get it out of the shell it sticks. use to suck right out and taste good. my wife and i use to look forward to a red lobster diner. change what i said and the customers will be coming back. hope they don't close.

  • Anthony Oury

    It sounds like they're not losing money so why close them?

  • Rob Stumpf

    "Making money" is obviously not enough by itself. If you invest one million bucks, and there is a $20 net profit for you, yeah, great.....you are making money. But it has to be enough to justify the investment, no? It has nothing whatsoever to do with "greed", just basic principles of finance.

  • Thomas Wente

    Red LObster is still the best place for seafood. Don't go back if you don't like too.

  • omg

    But you don't have to eat it all !!!

  • normandobondage

    Another Obama/Democrat party victim.

  • omg

    I have some decent meals @ Red Lobster's it's not like we go every week but have yet to have a reason to insult the food, the service or the price and for the record a $100 is not a lot for 2.

  • Donald Van Patten

    Yeah but if you don't live on the "Coast" you are out of luck.

  • Donald Van Patten

    I have heard almost all their stuff comes from China now. I guess that is their problem?

  • Frances

    Awwww, don't cry! You'll live!

  • Kevin Olszewski

    I have stop eating at red lobster because of poor service ,I will not miss them

  • Etianne Gebardine

    It means no more "popcorn shrimp"
    YECH!

  • Mike_E_V

    Very misleading headline. Bad for Darden's business. Where is the correction from this site??

  • Rob

    You read my mind, couldn't agree more

  • lou

    Red Lobster is an excellent sea food restaurant.
    No need to use non-advisable techniques .....please.

  • waldo

    don't worry the republicons can blame the unions or obama care and there brain dead followers will believe it

  • Jacalyn Gould

    is any of them closing in Michigan Bay City? When?

  • Sarah

    Yeah but you have to buy the cheese separately

  • Arnold Weingart

    YOUR WRONG!

  • Arnold Weingart

    Really? TMI!

  • dolores dempsey

    We go to Red Lobster fairly often, and haven't been disappointed. We noticed when their prices went up, but will use a coupon and still go there. The restaurant in Chula Vista sure seems to have a pretty brisk business.

  • Tracy Galvani

    You can buy the biscuit mix for red lobster cheddar bay biscuits in the stores now
    I made them and they were yummy

  • Debbie

    be nice to know cause Im sure they sold a lot of gift cards

  • saltcay

    Go find a local restaurant that does seafood. Keep your money local instead of giving it to a corporate entity.

  • pat mcgillidicudy

    The one in our part of the city does NOT have a happy hour.

  • Mark

    I've always felt that Red Lobster was over priced for what you got on your plate.
    No big loss to me if they close!!!

  • jtopfer

    Red Lobster is a terrible excuse for a restaurant and honestly, fast food is better. Anyone that likes Red Lobster probably has never been to a good restaurant in their life and lives off of chain crap.

  • Tammy L. Patterson

    That is freaking HILARIOUS!

  • preachy

    My GF used to swear by Red Lobster. Last year, I took her to a real seafood restaurant on City Island (Bronx, NY). No more Red Lobster for her!!!!

  • preachy

    Care to back that statement up with some, you know, facts????

  • Redd

    UH NO!!!!!!!!

  • Zumba900

    Used to be good, and, a good deal.
    It's been "managed" into the ditch.
    Continually charging more for less, does not keep people coming back.
    Endlessly ever increasing profits are not going to happen.
    The writing is on the wall.
    People are being squeezed dry by corporate greed.
    Job loss, stagnant, and/or backsliding wages.
    The customers are tapped out.
    Those at the bottom are already down for the count.
    And, the middle class is on the ropes.
    It's almost over.

  • Mario Gonzales

    Stupid management theories these days. They're making money, they're just not INCREASING the amount they make by ENOUGH to satisfy some stupid banker in a government-bailed-out office somewhere.

    Yeah, those bankers, geniuses. Keep following their advice, Darden. Enron did.

  • Kathy

    Hopefully they stay open, one of my favorite places to eat...

  • Lyle

    If you really think Red Lobster is good seafood....you should be spun off or closed yourself !!

  • Marlo Miller Ricciardi

    Darden said it is a false rumor and they are not closing. More lies from the New York Times.

  • Marlo Miller Ricciardi

    McDonald's doesn't sell steak or even pretend to sell steak ergo false comparison.

  • anonymous

    You're the reason our country has Obamacare. Go away moron. Red Lobster needs to close because the pacific ocean is poisoned with radiation incase you haven't done any research. But have fun with your radiated seafood.

  • terri

    RL doesn't get their biscuit mix from Swans ... or Schwanns. They have distribution centers that deliver to them exclusively .

  • Stan Gillespie

    they are not closing people... learn to read.