Olive Garden parent Darden stands by outlook after mixed quarterly results


Order breadsticks from Darden Restaurant Inc. Olive Garden

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Darden Restaurants on Thursday reported mixed quarterly results but still reiterated its outlook for 2023.

Shares of the company fell 2% in premarket trading.

Here’s what the company reported for the quarter ended Aug. 28, compared with what Wall Street had expected, based on a survey of analysts by Refinitiv:

  • Earnings per share: $1.56, meeting estimates
  • Revenue: $2.45 billion vs. $2.47 billion expected

Darden reported fiscal first-quarter net income of $193 million, or $1.56 per share, down from $230.9 million, or $1.75 per share, a year earlier. The company’s costs for food, beverages and labor have risen, weighing on its operating profit.

Net sales Revenue rose 6.1% to $2.45 billion, which was lighter than Wall Street expected. The company’s same-store sales rose 4.2% in the quarter. CEO Rick Cardenas said in a statement that Darden has seen seasonal changes in demand to return to business.

The company has previously said it is sticking to a strategy of pricing below rivals and limiting how much of its increased spending goes to diners.

For its fiscal year 2023, Darden expects earnings per share from continuing operations of $7.40 to $8. The agency expects inflation to increase by 6 percent in the new financial year. It is projecting revenue of $10.2 billion to $10.4 billion.

Darden expects same-store sales growth of 4% to 6% and 50 to 60 new restaurant openings in fiscal 2023.

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