Olive Garden Parent Darden Restaurants Faces Shareholder Showdown

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The showdown between Darden Restaurants Inc and activist investor Starboard Value LC will come to a boil at the company's annual meeting on Friday, where the Olive Garden parent is expected to at minimum lose control of its board.

Starboard is seeking a full board turnover. A win would be a feather in the cap for the activist investor and a stinging defeat for Darden, which earlier this year alienated many investors after brushing off their vote requesting a special meeting on a $2.1 billion sale of Red Lobster.

Large advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services and Glass, Lewis & Co recommended in late September that Darden investors cast their votes for all 12 of Starboard's director nominees.

(Reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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