Captain D's

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Captain D's SWOT Analysis

Even though Captain D's continues to face threats from its competitors, its strong financials and secure market positioning, among other strengths, have ensured its survival in the restaurant industry. The company can further growth by taking advantage of opportunities in technological advancements to improve customer service and the increasing consumption of seafood among Americans.


  • Strong Financials: Captain D currently registers an estimated annual revenue of about $553M. In 2017, the company achieved a sixth consecutive year of sales growth.
  • Extensive Coverage: With close to 539 locations across 25 states, Captain D’s has a broader reach of customers across the nation.
  • Strong Employee Base: The restaurant has close to 6,200 active employees who are experienced and highly skilled in various aspects such as sales and marketing among others
  • Secure Market Positioning; Captain D’s is firmly positioned at the top of the market as USA’s leading fast-casual seafood restaurant
  • Innovative menu: The company has, over the years, focused on introducing creative menu ideas that keep consumers yearning for more. In 2018, it launched the ‘Catfish Craze Menu’ nationwide to the delight of many customers.
  • Favorable loyalty program: Caption D’s through in 2018 tripled registration to its D’s Club program where consumers get to enjoy special promotional offers.


  • One of Captain D’s weaknesses is the fact that its products may be greasy as close to every item on the menu options is fried. It may be discouraging to a group of customers who are sensitive to the same.
  • The fact that is it a seafood only restaurant means that it has a limited variety of food on the menu. Customers who want to try out the company’s dishes are immediately turned off by the same fact.
  • The company does not have a healthy/ gluten-free menu. Recent trends show an increase in the demand for gluten-free food options among consumers.


  • There is room for expansion to other areas of the country, including the east coast of the USA. Currently, the company has focused its strategies on expanding the company’s coverage to reach previously unexplored markets in the USA.
  • In the restaurant industry, most players right now are taking advantage of technological advancements to improve the customer experience in their locations. Captain D’s can take advantage of the same to integrate aspects such as digital menus within their locations.
  • The company can also take advantage of the promising seafood consumption patterns in the US. Reports indicate that in 2017, seafood consumption in the U.S. increased to 16 pounds of seafood per capita from the 14.9 pounds consumed in 2016.
  • Also, there is an opportunity for Captain D to expand geographically using the franchisee model.


  • Captain D’s is continually facing threats from competitors such as Long John Silver’s and Arthur Treacher’s, which offer the same menu options to customers.
  • Secondly, the company has experience regulatory challenges posed by the strict administration by the U.S. Food authorities.
  • Captain D’s market share is at stake even as sandwich shops and burger joints opt to add seafood to their menu.
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Captain D's Competitors

Top 3 competitors of Captain D's are Long John Silver's, Mccormick & Schmicks Seafood Restaurants, and Rubio's Restaurants.

Long John Silver's

  • Key Offerings: Long John Silver's offers various seafood meals made of cod, Alaska pollock, shrimp, salmon and clams.
  • Differentiating Factors: Long John Silver’s provides a Nutrition Guide for all its dishes on its website.
  • Marketing Tactics and Channels: Long John Silver's is currently running a television ad titled ‘Fish Yeah!’ in the U.S. In addition, the company offers discount coupons for its customers through various social media profiles such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
  • Total Revenue: US$ 700 million.
  • Brand Positioning: Long John Silver's has positioned itself as a company engaged in sustainable fishing practices and sources its Alaska Pollock from Alaska; Cod and Salmon from the North Pacificand Clams from coastal Atlantic waters.

Mccormick & Schmicks Seafood Restaurants

Rubio's Restaurants

Research Strategy

The research started by looking for direct competitors of Captain D's in trusted websites and articles published about seafood restaurants. The research team further consulted websites like Seafood Source and databases like Crunchbase to understand the company’s product offerings, business model, differentiating factors, total revenues, marketing tactics, and brand positioning. Based on these resources, the main competitors of Captain D's were identified to include Long John Silver's, Mccormick & Schmicks Seafood Restaurants, and Rubio's Restaurants.


From Part 02
  • "Quick-service seafood chain Captain D’s bought by equity firm"
  • "Captain D's competes with Long John Silver's, Mccormick & Schmicks Seafood Restaurants, and Rubio's Restaurants."
  • "Long John Silver's has $700M in estimated revenue annually."
  • "We demonstrate our commitment by offering; the largest selection of the freshest seafood, seasonal dishes prepared with local ingredients and regional chef-inspired preparations. "
  • "Our menu fuses coastal-inspired flavors with our Mexican heritage to create award winning fish tacos and inventive burritos and bowls you’ll feel great about eating."
  • "Rubio's Restaurants has $210M in estimated revenue annually."