Popular Restaurant Chain Suddenly Closes Locations Across Florida

By Zuri Anderson

May 14, 2024

Woman putting closed sign on door of coffee shop
Photo: Luis Alvarez / DigitalVision / Getty Images

Red Lobster has abruptly shut down dozens of locations across the nation, including some in Florida, amid financial struggles.

TAGeX Brands, a liquidation company, announced Monday (May 13) that they're auctioning off kitchen equipment, chairs, tables, and other articles from 48 closed restaurants. The website also listed the affected locations and their addresses, and these stores have been listed as "temporarily closed" on the seafood chain's website.

While TAGeX brands display five shuttered locations in Florida, USA Today cataloged more closures:

  • Altamonte Springs
  • Gainesville
  • Kissimmee
  • Jacksonville (Commerce Center Drive) 
  • Jacksonville (Baymeadows Road) 
  • Jacksonville (City Station Drive)
  • Hialeah
  • Largo
  • Leesburg
  • Orlando (East Colonial Drive)
  • Orlando (West Colonial Drive)
  • Orlando (Golden Sky Lane)
  • Sanford
  • Tampa (East Busch Boulevard)
  • Tampa (Palm Pointe Drive)

Red Lobster was considering filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last month to tackle its debt, according to Bloomberg. The "Ultimate Endless Shrimp" promotion, which debuted last year and allowed customers to eat as much shrimp as they wanted for just $20, led to a loss of $12.5 million for the company. The limited-time promotion became a menu staple and now costs $25.

Food industry experts have also described the longtime restaurant chain as a "zombie brand" that "continues to wander aimlessly looking for direction." On top of the popular promotion setting them back millions of dollars, they've also been struggling to keep up with leases and labor costs, per Bloomberg.

The longtime restaurant chain has over 600 locations in the United States. It's unclear what they have planned for the rest of their locations.

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