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Darden Restaurants, Inc. (DRI)

  • Nov. 18, 2014, 3:24 PM
    | Comment!
  • Nov. 11, 2014, 7:47 AM
    • KeyCorp upgrades Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) to a Buy rating from Hold.
    • The investment firm thinks the overhaul underway at Darden sparked by Starboard Value's boardroom coup will increase shareholder value.
    • DRI +0.2% premarket.
    | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 22, 2014, 12:01 PM
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  • Oct. 16, 2014, 9:51 AM
    • Darden Restaurants (DRI -0.1%) reappoints former director Bill Simon back to its board of directors.
    • Simon is well-known in the retail world after serving as the CEO of Wal-Mart U.S.
    • Starboard Value backed the appointment.
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  • Oct. 14, 2014, 9:43 AM
    • Darden Restaurants (DRI +1.6%) says its new Starboard-infused board has selected Jeffrey Smith as a non-executive Chairman of the Board.
    • Smith is the CEO and Chief Investment Officer at Starboard.
    • Gene Lee will be the interim CEO to replace Clarence Otis, effective immediately.
    • Lee previously served as the company's COO.
  • Oct. 10, 2014, 9:41 AM
    • Starboard Value has won all 12 seats on the Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) board of directors, according to the Orlando Business Journal.
    • Shares of DRI are up 1.7% after being halted temporarily.
  • Oct. 10, 2014, 9:22 AM
    • The votes are being counted this morning at the annual meeting of Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) shareholders as investors wait to see if Starboard Value gains control of the restaurant chain operator.
    • In an interesting twist, Chairman Charles Ledsinger is giving the presentation for the company instead of CEO Clarence Otis who is MIA, according to an Orlando Sentinel reporter.
    • Most analysts thinks Starboard will triumph in the proxy battle.
  • Oct. 9, 2014, 8:21 AM
    • Shareholders of Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) will get their say after hearing the restaurant chain operator and Starboard Value trade barbs for close to a year.
    • A vote on new members of the board of directors is set for Friday at Darden's annual meeting.
    • KeyBanc forecasts a "high probability" that Starboard nominees will win a majority of the seats to give the hedge fund control of the board.
    • Full Starboard Value thesis on transforming Darden (.pdf)
    | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 2, 2014, 7:08 AM
    • Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) releases same-restaurant sales growth numbers for September.
    • Fiscal September 2015 same-restaurant: Olive Garden +0.6%; Longhorn Steakhouse +3.2%; The Capital Grille +6.4%; Yard House +3.8%; Seasons 52 +1.3%; Bahama Breeze -0.3%; Eddie V's +4.0%.
    • The company says it expects FQ2 EPS to fall in the upper range of its previously announced range of $0.26-$0.28.
    | 1 Comment
  • Sep. 26, 2014, 9:23 AM
    • Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) responds to the backing of proxy firm ISS of Starboard Value's slate of nominees to the board of the company.
    • Reciting some of its same positions from over the last month, Darden says ceding full control to Starboard is a losing proposition for shareholders.
    | Comment!
  • Sep. 25, 2014, 11:00 AM
    • Proxy firm Glass Lewis recommends to shareholders at Darden Restaurants (DRI -0.6%) that they elect all 12 of Starboard Value's nominees to the board.
    • A long term loss of shareholder value at Darden is cited by Glass Lewis in making its recommendation.
    | Comment!
  • Sep. 23, 2014, 1:41 PM
    • Traffic to quick-service restaurants was flat for the year ending on June 30, according to data compiled by the NPD Group.
    • Establishments with an average check price of $10-$20 saw more traffic growth than sub-$10 outlets.
    • Fine dining restaurants saw a 3% increase in visits over the period.
    • The research firm says "cultural and economic phenomenon" have created a shift in consumer dining habits that may be permanent.
  • Sep. 18, 2014, 8:36 AM
    • Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) sends a letter to shareholders warning that Starboard gaining control of the board would be "significantly disruptive and destabilizing" in light of the progress it thinks the restaurant chains are making.
    • Proxy votes will be tallied at Darden's annual shareholder meeting on October 10.
    • Starboard-Darden timeline
  • Sep. 17, 2014, 10:27 AM
    • No major shocker, but Darden Restaurants (DRI +0.4%) urges shareholders to vote for its board nominees over the full slate put up by Starboard.
    • Starboard has hammered away at Darden and is looking to gain enough board seats to implement sweeping changes with the Olive Garden chain.
    | 1 Comment
  • Sep. 15, 2014, 1:07 PM
    • Darden Restaurants (DRI +3.5%) releases its response to Starboard Value's treatise on how to fix Olive Garden.
    • The gist of the presentation is that current Darden initiatives already address many of the Starboard proposals.
    • Darden says new pilot remodels of Olive Garden have led to a 10% boost in traffic and a higher percentage of alcoholic beverage sales.
    • SEC Schedule 14A
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  • Sep. 12, 2014, 1:44 PM
    • Starboard Value's 294-page presentation on how to transform Darden Restaurants (DRI -1.7%) has a sharp focus on the need for change at the Olive Garden chain.
    • The hedge fund calls for a complete OG menu revamp to stick to authentic Italian dishes.
    • The quality of staples (soup, salad, and breadsticks) needs to be improved and the introduction of more  healthier (gluten-free, low-fat) options should be initiated.
    • A value proposition should be implemented at OG, instead of selling "massive quantities of barely edible fried items."
    • Increase the mix of alcohol to total sales by pushing wine. Currently, alcohol only accounts for 8% of revenue at Olive Garden vs. 15% at Macaroni Grill.
    • Tighter management of food inefficiencies to lower costs. Can the "unlimited" portions.
    • Full Starboard Value thesis on transforming Darden (.pdf)
    | 1 Comment
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Company Description
Darden Restaurants Inc owns and operates dining restaurants. Some of its trade names are Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, Eddie V's Prime Seafood, Wildfish Seafood Grille and Yard House.
Sector: Services
Industry: Restaurants
Country: United States