In 1969, Ray Danner, a former KFC franchisee, founded Mr. D’s Seafood and Hamburgers, now known as Captain D’s, in Tennessee with a focus on quick-service seafood. Danner created his own company, Danner Foods, a few years later that encompassed Mr. D’s as well as dozens of Shoney’s units. It was at this time that Danner dropped “hamburgers” from the restaurant name to separate the menus at the two brands.
Danner Foods merged with Shoney’s in 1974, at which time Mr. D’s changed its name to Captain D’s before being sold to Lone Star Funds. For a period of 15 years, Captain D’s was bought and sold by several private-equity firms including Sun Capital Partners Inc. and Centre Partners.
In 2017, Captain D’s was purchased by its current parent company, Sentinel Capital Partners, for an undisclosed amount to add to its portfolio, which also contains Fazoli’s, Newk’s Eatery, Huddle House and TGI Fridays.
Key Data: Captain D’s
Segment: Quick Service
Restaurant Segment: LSR Other
Number of US Locations: 536
2020 Sales: $503.9 million
Source: Datassential Firefly 500
CEO: Philip M. Greifeld
Parent/Group: Sentinel Capital Partners