Darden Restaurants Earnings: Here’s Why Shares are Up Now

Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) delivered a profit and missed Wall Street’s expectations, BUT beat the revenue expectation. The revenue beat is a positive sign to shareholders seeking high growth out of the company. Shares are up 0.04%.

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Darden Restaurants, Inc. Earnings Cheat Sheet

Results: Adjusted Earnings Per Share decreased 12.17% to $1.01 in the quarter versus EPS of $1.15 in the year-earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 11.3% to $2.3 billion from the year-earlier quarter.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: Darden Restaurants, Inc. reported adjusted EPS income of $1.01 per share. By that measure, the company missed the mean analyst estimate of $1.04. It beat the average revenue estimate of $2.27 billion.

Quoting Management: “Growing same-restaurant traffic is our top priority,” said Clarence Otis, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Darden. “So, with same-restaurant traffic growth this quarter that was well above industry average, we had an encouraging end to a difficult year. In the last quarter of fiscal 2012 and first two quarters of this fiscal year, our three large brands trailed the industry on a combined basis on this important measure of relevance. In response, we moved with added urgency on three fronts. We began more directly matching competitive promotional intensity around affordability. We began more aggressively addressing affordability on our core menus. And most importantly, we have increased our investment in refining the guest experiences we offer to make sure those experiences are even more responsive to what guests want beyond affordability.”

Key Stats (on next page)…

Revenue increased 1.81% from $2.26 billion in the previous quarter. EPS decreased 0.98% from $1.02 in the previous quarter.

Looking Forward: Analysts have a more negative outlook for the company’s next-quarter performance. Over the past three months, the average estimate for next quarter’s earnings has fallen from a profit of $0.83 to a profit $0.82. For the current year, the average estimate is a profit of $3.16, which is the same with that ninety days ago.

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(Company fundamentals provided by Xignite Financials. Email any earnings discrepancies to earnings [at] wallstcheatsheet.com)