Sales gains, new units drive Darden 2Q profit

Darden Restaurants Inc. reported Monday a 23.5-percent year-to-year increase in its second-quarter net income on a quarterly sales gain of 5.2 percent.

Orlando, Fla.-based Darden, which operates 1,852 restaurants under six brands including Olive Garden, Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse, said its performance was driven by new restaurant openings — 63 new locations from the year-ago second quarter — and positive same-store sales.

The company earned $74.5 million, or

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