ORLANDO, Fla., Jan. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE: DRI) today announced that it has amended its Area Development Agreement with Restaurant Operators, Inc. (ROI) to include Red Lobster, America's leading seafood restaurant. The amended agreement now calls for ROI to initially develop a minimum of eight Olive Garden, three Red Lobster and three additional LongHorn Steakhouse restaurants in Puerto Rico by 2017.
ROI already operates five LongHorn units in Puerto Rico as part of an agreement that was executed prior to Darden's 2007 acquisition of RARE Hospitality, Inc.
"ROI is a tremendous partner, and we are thrilled they will now bring Darden's three largest brands to Puerto Rico," said Kim Lopdrup, senior vice president of Business Development for Darden."We are proud to include the Red Lobster, Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse brands in our portfolio of restaurants," said ROI CEO Jorge Colon-Gerena. "Each brand is the best in its segment and meets the criteria of the brands we represent – quality, service, innovation, great taste, exciting menu, and casual family dining experience. We look forward to growing these brands in the years to come." About Darden RestaurantsDarden Restaurants, Inc., (NYSE: DRI), the world's largest full-service restaurant company, owns and operates more than 2,000 restaurants that generate over $8.0 billion in annual sales. Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., and employing more than 190,000 people, Darden is recognized for a culture that rewards caring for and responding to people. In 2013, Darden was named to the FORTUNE "100 Best Companies to Work For" list for the third year in a row and is the only full-service restaurant company to ever appear on the list. Our restaurant brands – Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, The Capital Grille, Eddie V's and Yard House – reflect the rich diversity of those who dine with us. Our brands are built on deep insights into what our guests want. For more information, please visit www.darden.com. DRI:G