Captain D’s continues to bolster its successful turnaround and brand rejuvenation by posting another quarter of positive same store sales increases, marking five quarters and 16 consecutive months of strong increases. The 520-unit brand produced a record year, with a 9.2 percent same-store sales growth in company restaurants as well as a 7.5 percent increase in franchised restaurants – positioning the brand to end its fiscal year in 2012 with an all-time record for same-store sales increases.
Coupled with the brand’s ability to sustain same-store sales increases, Captain D’s achieved a new all-time average unit volume record for the year. This record was supported by the brand being systematically rejuvenated with upgraded field and corporate talent, investments in new and core menu items, advancements in new restaurant equipment, a re-engineered operating line, and the development of fresh, new facility décor and designs.
“Our sales gains have been generated from capturing significant market share from our QSR competitors,” said Phil Greifeld, CEO and President of Captain D’s. Captain D’s guests have cited vast improvements in food quality, sharper operational execution, innovative new menu items, highly compelling value offerings, and memorable TV spots as reasons for their increased frequency. Mr. Greifeld points to D’s employees as the most important factor in this improvement: “The single biggest driver of our success will always be our people. Our talented professionals, with a sharp, guest-centric mindset of exceeding our customers’ expectations, have ignited our brand rejuvenation and will continue to lead our success in the new year.”
Driven by its goal to be the industry’s leading innovator, the company has jump-started several new initiatives that will roll out beginning in 2013. Jonathan Muhtar, Chief Marketing Officer, cites this commitment to innovation as the impetus for D’s turnaround. “In 2012, we began filling our pipeline with compelling product platforms ranging from our new fire-grilled menu to a totally revamped 3-D kids program featuring several new items. All of this will be brought to life through our new, state-of-the-art menu boards which showcase all of our latest offerings. These investments are already impacting sales growth, but we are just getting started.”
One new product which highlights D’s seafood innovation is its new Hand-Breaded Fish Tenders Meal. Unlike most QSR seafood which comes in square fish sandwiches or round fish bites, these tenders are sliced straight from a flaky white fish filet, breaded by hand and served with two sides and hushpuppies as the latest offering of D’s successful $4.99 Full Meal Deal promotion. This month, D’s will kick off an extensive marketing campaign to spread the word about this great new product—including new TV spots, digital, social, print and outdoor advertising.
Investing in D’s facilities is also paying off for the brand. “Our Beach Design remodel showcases a fresh, contemporary look and is driving double-digit sales growth,” Mr. Greifeld said. “We will continue to implement this profitable program into other key markets.” Greifeld said he is confident that, between the new image and the new grilled seafood options offered on the menu, Captain D’s will systematically capture new guests while increasing visit frequency. By January 2014, all restaurants will be equipped with the D’s broiler.
Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Captain D’s owns, operates and franchises 520 restaurants in 25 states, plus military bases around the world. Captain D’s offers its customers great seafood at reasonable prices in a relaxed environment. The brand’s restaurants serve a widely varied seafood menu that includes freshly prepared entrees, and the company’s signature hand-battered fish which is prepared to order to ensure freshness. The restaurants also offer premium-quality grilled fish, as well as shrimp, chicken, shrimp & beef kabobs, hushpuppies, desserts and freshly brewed, southern style sweet tea, a Captain D’s favorite. For more information, please visit www.captainds.com.