Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI), Parent company to Olive Garden, reported its financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year on Thursday. The report detailed the fact that same-stores sales almost met 2019 levels as dining restrictions eased. Furthermore, the company’s 2022 outlook predicts that total sales for the year will surpass pre-pandemic revenue.
The American multi-brand restaurant operator reported earnings of USD2.03 per share, in comparison to the expected USD1.79 a share. Revenue amounted to USD2.28 Billion, higher than analysts anticipated USD2.19 Billion. Net income totaled USD369 Million or USD2.79 a share, an increase from the previous year’s loss of USD479.7 Million, or USD3.85 per share.
“We had a strong quarter that exceeded our expectations as sales improved throughout the quarter,” said Darden Chairman & CEO Gene Lee. “I am proud of how our teams welcomed more of our guests back and created memorable experiences. Over the last 15 months, we have made numerous strategic investments in our business, while streamlining our operations and improving productivity. Given the business transformation work we have done, and the demand we are seeing from the consumer, we are well positioned to thrive in this operating environment.”
Olive Garden’s same-store sales, which make up half of Darden’s revenue, climbed 61.9%. Take-out orders accounted for a third of Olive Garden’s sales throughout the quarter, despite the ease in dining room restrictions. Moreover, on Mother’s Day, the Italian-ispired chain beat it’s all-time single-day sales record.
LongHorn Steakhouse was the only sector of Darden’s business to maintain positive same-store sales throughout a two-year basis. Its same-store sales doubled in comparison to the previous years and increased 13.5% compared with two years ago.
Darden is scheduled to hold its annual shareholder meeting on September 22.