Skip navigation
Bloomin-Outback-Steakhouse-David-Deno-to-retire.jpg Bloomin' Brands Inc.
David Deno to retire as CEO of Bloomin' Brands Inc., parent to the Outback Steakhouse brand.

David Deno to retire as CEO at Outback Steakhouse parent Bloomin’ Brands

Executive to remain in role at restaurant company until successor is named; board to launch search

David Deno, after 12 years with Bloomin’ Brands Inc., parent to the Outback Steakhouse and other brands, will be retiring as CEO, the company said Tuesday.

The Tampa, Fla.-based casual-dining company said Deno had served as CEO for five years, when he was named to succeed longtime CEO Liz Smith in March 2019. The company said its board will conduct a search for Deno’s successor.

Bloomin-Brands-CEO-David-Deno.jpg“David has strengthened the financial foundation at Bloomin’ Brands through better profitability and a stronger balance sheet, which is especially impressive given nearly half of his CEO tenure was during COVID,” said Michael Mohan, Bloomin’ board chair, in a statement. “He is also credited with optimizing our international presence, especially in Brazil.”

“Conversations regarding the timing of this transition began in 2023 as a normal course of succession planning,” Mohan said. “The board is searching for a leader who will build upon David’s commitment and dedication to all 87,000 employees of these great brands.”

Deno joined Bloomin’ Brands in 2012 as executive vice president and chief financial officer. He has served on the company’s board of directors since 2019.

"When I joined Bloomin’ Brands in 2012, my intention was to stay here for five years," Deno said during the company's first-quarter earnings call Tuesday. "While the opportunity to serve as CEO, followed by the pandemic, extended that plan, the time was now right to begin the search for my successor. Discussions with the board of directors about the time of my retirement has been underway for some time, and they are leading the search."

Deno joined Bloomin’ from Best Buy, where he served as president of Asia and chief financial officer for the international division.

Previously, Deno spent 15 years with Pizza Hut and Yum Brands, serving as CFO for Pizza Hut, Yum Restaurants International and Yum Brands; he also served as chief operating officer of Yum Brands.

Including roles at Burger King, Deno has had a 40-year career, mostly in the hospitality industry. Last year, Deno was honored with the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) Silver Plate Award in recognition for his contribution to the foodservice industry.

“It has been an honor to lead this great company of restaurants,” Deno said. “I was very fortunate to be offered an opportunity to work in this dynamic and rewarding industry. I have enjoyed the challenge and thank all of those along the way who helped guide my career.”

Bloomin' Brands has more than 1,450 restaurants in 46 states, Guam and 13 other countries. Its brands include Outback, Carrabba's Italian Grill, Bonefish Grill and Fleming's Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar.

Update May 7, 2024: This story has been updated with David Deno comments from the Tuesday Bloomin Brands Inc. first-quarter earnings call with analysts.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected]

Follow him on X/Twitter: @RonRuggless

TAGS: People
Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.