No Country For Cheddar Bay Biscuits: Red Lobster And Olive Garden Profits Down After Anti-Obamacare Campaign Backfires

red-lobster-menu-2012

Cheddar Bay Biscuits or healthcare?

Red Lobster And Olive Garden Profits Down

Ever since Darden Restaurants — the owner of the Olive Garden and Red Lobster chains — first announced its anti-Obamacare campaign, the company has had a tough couple of months.

Via ThinkProgress:

Darden admitted as much when it revised its predictions for latest quarterly earnings down in December, attributing the drop to “recent negative media coverage on Darden [...] and how we might accommodate healthcare reform.”

The decline in traffic comes despite the company’s efforts to revamp the menus and marketing for its flagship chains. At Olive Garden, the company rolled out an updated advertising campaign and introduced more light and affordable dishes. At Red Lobster, it added options for people who don’t like seafood.

The negative press led the company to reverse course on its threat to shift employees to part-time status to avoid covering them under Obamacare. The latest report on Darden’s earnings prove that was a good move, since the restaurants did take a turn for the worse as a result of their bad publicity. Its net income fell 37 percent

Well, if around half of Americans support the president, including Obamacare, then it makes sense that being a greedy azzhole about it will potentially annoy half your customers. Annoying half your customers isn’t a good business decision.

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