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    Asian & Seafood

  • No. 1 Asian brand Panda Express apparently didn’t get the memo. With the drop in shopping, particularly in the chain’s home market of California, the standard corporate directive was to focus marketing on inexpensive products.

    So what’d mall-concentrated Panda do? Tout its first shrimp dish and a premium chicken entrée. It also adopted a mobile ordering service, promising to save patrons time, not necessarily money. Results apparently left it content to stay off the routing slip.

    Menu innovations were also the strategy for No. 1 seafood concept Long John Silver’s. During a conference call with analysts, officials of Yum! Brands were asked if they’d lost interest in Long John Silver’s and were thinking of selling it. Not at all, CEO David Novak said. Sure, the company was focusing on its powerhouses, but Yum had every intention of strengthening the seafood chain and pairing it with Yum siblings where warranted. Meanwhile, the chain continues to explore new waters with products like a $1 fish taco.

    Segment
    Rank
    2010
    QSR 50
    Rank
    Chain U.S.
    Systemwide
    Sales ’09
    (millions)
    U.S.
    Average
    Annual
    Sales Per
    Unit ’09
    (Thousands)
    Franchised/
    Licensed
    Units ’09
    Company-
    Owned
    Units ’09
    Total
    Units ’09
        Asian          
    1 23 Panda Express $1,245.0 $1,023.0 24 1,265 1,289
    2 77 Samurai Sam’s $14.4 $283.0 49 2 51
                   
        Seafood          
    1 29 Long John Silver’s*2 $700.0 $660.0 989 0 989
    2 44 Captain D’s $461.2 $839.0 263 286 549