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Long John Silver's

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Long John Silver's LLC
Long John Silver's
Company typeSubsidiary
GenreFast-food restaurant
FoundedAugust 18, 1969; 54 years ago (August 18, 1969)
Lexington, Kentucky, United States
FounderJim Patterson
HeadquartersLouisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Number of locations
568 (as of June 17, 2023)
Area served
United States
New Zealand
Philippines (Planned)
Thailand (Planned)
Vietnam (Planned)
Kuwait (Planned)
Japan (Planned)
Myanmar (Planned)
Brunei (Planned)
Laos (Planned)
Key people
Nate Fowler (President)
Edmond Heelan (COO)
Craig Daniel (CFO)
Number of employees
ParentIndependent (1969–1988)
Jerrico Inc. (1988–1999)
Yorkshire Global Restaurants (1999–2002)
Yum! Brands (2002–2011)
LJS Partners (2011–2022)
Four Oaks Partners & Bob Jenkins (2022–present)
Footnotes / references
Fish, Chicken, and Shrimp Meal at Long John Silver's

Long John Silver's, formerly known as Long John Silver's Seafood Shoppes and sometimes abbreviated as LJS, is an American chain of fast-food restaurants that specializes in seafood. The brand's name is derived from the character of the same name from Robert Louis Stevenson's novel Treasure Island.[2]

In November 2022, Long John Silver's was acquired by Four Oaks Partners, a group of investors led by Bob Jenkins, himself a Long John Silver's franchisee and president of Charter Foods.[3]


The first restaurant opened on August 18, 1969, in Lexington, Kentucky.[4][5] The original location, on 301 Southland Drive, was previously the Cape Codder seafood carry-out restaurant. The original Cape Codder concrete block building was redesigned by architect Druce Henn, who created the New England style of Long John Silver's early chain restaurants. That original location is now a styling salon.[6][7]

Earlier restaurants were known for their Cape Cod style buildings, blue roofs with square cupolas, wood benches/tables, lobster pots, and ship's wheels. Later, more nautically themed decorations were added such as seats made to look like nautical flags.

The restaurant chain arrived in Singapore in 1983 and has had a continuous presence in the country ever since. It remains one of 30 countries outside of the United States to have Long John Silver's outlets.[8]

Early restaurants also featured separate entrance and exit doors, a corridor-like waiting line area, deep fryers with food heaters that were transparent so customers could view the food to be served, and wrought iron 'sword' door handles. These buildings had dock-like walkways, lined with pilings and thick ropes.

Long John Silver's was acquired by Jerrico in 1988. Jerrico was taken private in 1989 through a highly leveraged management buyout, and one year later, the other restaurant concepts were divested to focus on Long John Silver's.[9]

After struggling for the next several years under its heavy debt load, Jerrico Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in June 1998. In September 1999, A&W announced to acquire the chain out of bankruptcy. As a result, Yorkshire Global Restaurants was formed.

In 2000, Yorkshire Global Restaurants agreed to test multi-branded locations with Louisville, Kentucky-based Tricon Global, owner of the KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell chains.

The parent company of Long John Silver's and A&W, Yorkshire was acquired by Tricon Global and Tricon was renamed Yum! Brands, Inc in May 2002. By January 2011, Yum! announced it was seeking a buyer for its Long John Silver's and A&W All-American Restaurants divisions, citing poor sales and a desire to shift its focus to international expansion.[10]

In September 2011, Yum! announced the impending sale of Long John Silver's to LJS Partners – a group consisting of franchisees and other private investors.[11]

In July 2013, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a nutrition and health policy watchdog group, named Long John Silver's "Big Catch" meal the worst restaurant meal in America, noting that it contained 33 grams of trans fat, 19 grams of saturated fat, 1,320 calories, and almost 3,700 milligrams of sodium.[12] The company announced that it had eliminated trans fats from its menu by January 2014.[13]

In March 2015, James O'Reilly, who had previously worked for KFC (another Yum! Brands holding), was appointed as the CEO. He stated that he expected the chain to maintain its 1,132 stores, refocus its marketing following negative press about the fat and sodium content of the menu, and looked to the possibility of future expansion.[14]

On May 22, 2018, Long John Silver's announced the acquisition of 76 franchised restaurants, primarily owned and renovated by ServUS, located primarily in Indiana.[15] On October 19, 2019, Warren W. Rosenthal, former president of Jerrico and developer of 1,350 Long John Silver's restaurants, died, aged 96.[16]


United States[edit]

The chain has hundreds of restaurants in over 35 states.[17]


Long John Silver's expanded to Canada in the 1970s, but did not last long there. It returned in 2003 with one restaurant opening in Peterborough, Ontario, only to close down in 2006.[18]


Singapore has remained as Long John Silver's most dominant international market.[8]


The first Long John Silver's restaurant opened in Indonesia in May 2023 and plans to open up further outlets in the country.[19] Indonesia is also the first country to have the chain as of its Asian expansion.

New Zealand[edit]

The chain opened up at the LynnMall in New Zealand.


Long John Silver's operated in Malaysia for some time, but shut down due to declining sales and being downplayed by competitors and rivals such as KFC and local seafood restaurants.[20] However, as of the chain's Asian expansion, it is planning on returning.[21] It opened a location in Putrajaya in February 2024.[22]


Long John Silver's operated in Taiwan for some time but shut down by 2009.[23]

United Kingdom[edit]

A location opened at Walsall in the United Kingdom in 2004.[24]


Long John Silver's operated in Philippines at SM City Manila for a time but shut down in 2019 due to declining sales and low demand.[25] It is planning on returning as of the chain's Asian expansion.[21]

Saudi Arabia[edit]

Long John Silver's was in Saudi Arabia for some time. However, similar to restaurants like Dairy Queen, Taco Bell and Red Lobster, it was not popular and shut down in the country.


Long John Silver's existed in Thailand for some time but shut down by 2020.[26][27] It is planning on returning as part of the chain's Asian expansion.[21]

United Arab Emirates[edit]

Long John Silver's shut down in United Arab Emirates due to bad sales.[citation needed]

Other countries[edit]

The chain also formerly had outlets in Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Australia, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain and Hong Kong. It is planning on returning in Kuwait[28][18] and Japan as of the chain's Asian expansion. It will also soon come to Myanmar, Brunei and Laos.[21]

Overall locations[edit]




See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Panera Bread Company 2016 Form 10-K Annual Report". SEC.gov. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
  2. ^ Stice, Joel (October 30, 2018). "The untold truth of Long John Silver's". Mashed.com. Retrieved April 13, 2020.
  3. ^ "Long John Silver's Makes its Debut in Indonesia". August 29, 2023.
  4. ^ Sloan, Scott (December 9, 2011). "A&W Returns to Lexington". Kentucky.com. Archived from the original on November 5, 2012. Retrieved November 6, 2012.
  5. ^ "Long John Silver's Franchise Costs & Fees, Long John Silver's FDD & Franchise Information". Franchise Direct. Retrieved May 11, 2021.
  6. ^ "Fayette County PVA". Fayette County, Kentucky. Qpublic.net. Archived from the original on February 22, 2013. Retrieved November 6, 2012.
  7. ^ "Fantasia Styling Salon". Fantasia Styling Salon. Retrieved November 6, 2012.
  8. ^ a b Yawen, Lu (October 19, 2022). "Bell of the Ball: A Tribute to Long John Silver's, Fast Food Underdog". ricemedia.co. Rice Media. Retrieved October 19, 2022.
  9. ^ "COMPANY NEWS; Jerrico Is Selling Restaurant Chains". The New York Times. Reuters. May 2, 1990. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
  10. ^ "Yum! Brands Places Long John Silver's and A&W All-American Restaurants for Sale". Business Wire. January 18, 2011. Retrieved February 24, 2014.
  11. ^ "Yum Sells 2 Fast-Food Chains". The New York Times. September 22, 2011. Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  12. ^ "'Heart Attack On A Hook': Meet America's 'Worst Restaurant Meal'". NPR.org. July 2, 2013.
  13. ^ Aubrey, Allison (January 22, 2014). "Long John Silver's Throws Trans Fats Overboard". NPR. Retrieved February 5, 2014.
  14. ^ Bowling, Caitlin (March 16, 2015). "Long John Silver's still trying to regain ground following negative press in 2013". Louisville Business First.
  15. ^ danny (May 22, 2018). "Long John Silver's Buys 76 Franchised Restaurants". QSR magazine. Retrieved September 26, 2018.
  16. ^ Ward, Karla (October 19, 2019). "Lexington businessman, philanthropist Warren Rosenthal has died". Lexington Herald Leader.
  17. ^ "Find a Long John Silver's near you!". locations.ljsilvers.com. Retrieved October 16, 2023.
  18. ^ a b c d "Long John Silver's coming back to Canada". The Globe and Mail. January 15, 2003. Retrieved December 24, 2023.
  19. ^ "Long John Silver's – Indonesia". Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  20. ^ Chong, Casey (February 11, 2019). "7 Fast Food Restaurant Chains That Used To Exist In Malaysia". TallyPress. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  21. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Long John Silver's eyes further expansion in Southeast Asia". www.seafoodsource.com. Retrieved October 14, 2023.
  22. ^ "Long John Silver's". Long John Silver's. Retrieved February 18, 2024.
  23. ^ "Restaurants: Long John Silver\'s (海滋客) - Taipei Times". www.taipeitimes.com. November 23, 2007. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  24. ^ "US company eyes fish and chips". The Caterer. December 10, 2004. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  25. ^ a b "40% Off Food and Drinks at Long John Silver's (SM Manila)". www.metrodeal.com. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  26. ^ a b Ivy (October 24, 2020). "7 Oct 2020 Onward: Long John Silver's Taste of Thailand Promotion". SG.EverydayOnSales.com. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  27. ^ a b News, Bloomberg (March 12, 1999). "COMPANY NEWS; LONG JOHN SILVER'S SAYS IT WILL BE ACQUIRED BY A&W". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved December 24, 2023. {{cite news}}: |last= has generic name (help)
  28. ^ a b "Kuwait City has an American flavor". Stars and Stripes. Retrieved November 26, 2023.

External links[edit]