Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc. Reports First Quarter 2011 Financial Results
HEATHROW, Fla.(BUSINESS WIRE)April 29, 2011Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: RUTH) today reported unaudited financial results for its first quarter ended March 27, 2011.
Highlights for the first quarter of 2011 compared to the first quarter of 2010 were as follows:
Michael P. ODonnell, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc., stated, We were pleased that our comparable sales momentum at Ruths Chris Steak House restaurants continued during the first quarter. These higher sales volumes helped us expand restaurant
level margins, despite higher food costs. In late March, we rolled out a small price increase to mitigate the impact of commodity pressures. We believe the Ruths Chris brand has pricing power, but with five consecutive quarters of traffic growth, our goal is to remain prudent with additional pricing at this time. Our efforts to strengthen our balance sheet continued in the first quarter, as we reduced our outstanding debt by $6 million. We also remain active on the real estate front, as we continue to evaluate opportunities for 2012.
Review of Operating Results
Total revenues, which include Company-owned restaurant sales, franchise income, and other operating income were $98.8 million compared to $94.7 million in the first quarter of 2010.
Company-owned restaurant sales increased 4.5% to $95.3 million for the first quarter of 2011 from $91.2 million in the same quarter last year. Total operating weeks increased 1.2% to 1,131 from 1,118.
Average weekly sales for Ruths Chris Steak House were $90 thousand in the first quarter of 2011 compared to $85.6 thousand in the first quarter of 2010. Average weekly sales at Mitchells Fish Market were $68.5 thousand compared to $70.5 thousand in the prior year first quarter.
For the first quarter of 2011, Company-owned comparable restaurant sales at Ruths Chris Steak House increased 5.2%, which consisted of an entrée increase of 3.9% along with an average check increase of 1.2%. Comparable restaurant sales at Mitchells Fish Market decreased 2.7%, which consisted of an entrée decrease of 6.1% and an average check increase of 3.5%.
Franchise income increased 4.3% to $3.1 million in the first quarter of 2011 from $2.9 million in the prior year first quarter. Comparable franchise-owned restaurant sales increased 9.3%.
Operating income was $10.0 million in the first quarter of 2011 compared to $9.8 million in the prior year first quarter. The first quarter of 2010 included a one-time $0.6 million restructuring benefit for which there was no comparable benefit in the first quarter of 2011.
Based on current information, Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc. is reiterating its previous 2011 outlook:
The Company will host a conference call to discuss first quarter 2011 financial results today at 8:30 AM Eastern Time. Hosting the call will be Mike ODonnell, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Bob Vincent, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.
The conference call can be accessed live over the phone by dialing 1-888-471-3836 or for international callers by dialing 1-719-325-2196. A replay will be available one hour after the call and can be accessed by dialing 1-877-870-5176 or 1-858-384-5517 for international callers; the password is 5125500. The replay will be available until May 6, 2011. The call will also be webcast live from the Companys website at www.rhgi.com under the investor relations section.
About Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc.
Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: RUTH) is a leading restaurant company focused exclusively on the upscale dining segment. The Company owns the Ruths Chris Steak House, Mitchells Fish Market, Mitchells Steakhouse and Camerons Steakhouse concepts. With more than 150 Company- and franchisee-owned locations worldwide, Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc. was founded in 1965 and is headquartered in Heathrow, Fla.
For further information about our restaurants, to make reservations, or to purchase gift cards, please visit: www.RuthsChris.com, www.MitchellsFishMarket.com, www.MitchellsSteakhouse.com and www.Camerons-Steakhouse.com. For more information about Ruths Hospitality Group, Inc., please visit www.rhgi.com.
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