Certain statements in this Web site and other materials filed or to be filed by Darden Restaurants, Inc. with the Securities and Exchange Commission (as well as information included in oral or written statements made or to be made by us) may contain statements that are forward-looking within the meaning of the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as codified in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the Exchange Act). Words or phrases such as “believe,” “will,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate” and “project,” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. All of these statements, and any other statements in this report that are not historical facts, are forward-looking. These forward-looking statements are based on assumptions concerning important factors, risks and uncertainties that could significantly affect anticipated results in the future and, accordingly, could cause the actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. These factors, risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to those discussed below in Part I, Item IA “Risk Factors” in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, and in our Form 10-Q and Form 8-K reports (including all amendments to those reports). These risks and uncertainties include:
Food safety and food-borne illness concerns throughout the supply chain, litigation, including allegations of illegal, unfair or inconsistent employment practices, unfavorable publicity, or a failure to respond effectively to adverse publicity, risks relating to public policy changes and federal, state and local regulation of our business, including in the areas of health care reform, environmental matters, minimum wage, unionization, data privacy, menu labeling, immigration requirements and taxes, labor and insurance costs, insufficient guest or employee facing technology, or a failure to maintain a continuous and secure cyber network, free from material failure, interruption or security breach, our inability or failure to execute a comprehensive business continuity plan following a major natural disaster such as a hurricane or manmade disaster, including terrorism, health concerns arising from food-related pandemics, outbreaks of flu viruses or other diseases, intense competition, or an insufficient focus on competition and the consumer landscape, our failure to drive both short-term and long-term profitable sales growth through brand relevance, operating excellence, opening new restaurants of existing brands and developing or acquiring new dining brands, failure to complete the acquisition of Yard House, or once completed, to successfully integrate the Yard House business, and the additional indebtedness incurred to finance the Yard House acquisition, our plans to expand our newer brands Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52 and Eddie V's, and the testing of synergy restaurants and other new business ventures, that have not yet proven their long-term viability, a lack of suitable new restaurant locations or a decline in the quality of the locations of our current restaurants, higher-than-anticipated costs to open, close, relocate or remodel restaurants, a failure to identify and execute innovative marketing and customer relationship tactics, ineffective or improper use of social media or other marketing initiatives, and increased advertising and marketing costs, a failure to develop and recruit effective leaders or the loss of key personnel, or a significant shortage of high-quality restaurant employees, a failure to address cost pressures, including rising costs for commodities, health care and utilities used by our restaurants, and a failure to effectively deliver cost management activities and achieve economies of scale in purchasing, the impact of shortages or interruptions in the delivery of food and other products from third party vendors and suppliers, adverse weather conditions and natural disasters, volatility in the market value of derivatives we use to hedge commodity prices, economic and business factors specific to the restaurant industry and other general macroeconomic factors including unemployment, energy prices and interest rates that are largely out of our control, disruptions in the financial markets that may impact consumer spending patterns, affect the availability and cost of credit and increase pension plan expenses, risks associated with doing business with franchisees, business partners and vendors in foreign markets, failure to protect our service marks or other intellectual property, impairment of the carrying value of our goodwill or other intangible assets, a failure of our internal controls over financial reporting and future changes in accounting standards., and other factors and uncertainties disclosed from time to time in reports filed by Darden with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Since it is not possible to foresee all such factors, risk and uncertainties, investors should not consider these factors to be a complete list of all risks or uncertainties.