Continuing to see traction from turnaround efforts, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. reported a 59-percent increase in second-quarter profit despite lags in traffic at company-owned locations, the company said Thursday.
For the quarter ended July 10, the Greenwood Village, Colo.-based casual-dining chain recorded earnings of $6.9 million, or 44 cents per share, compared with $4.3 million, or 28 cents per share, for the same quarter a year ago.
Revenue for the quarter increased 7.2 percent to $215.8 million.
Same-store sales at company-operated locations increased 3.1 percent, which was driven by a 4.5-percent increase in average check, partially offset by a 1.4-percent decline in guest counts, the company said.
At U.S. franchise locations, same-store sales increased 2.6 percent. They were up 3.4 percent in Canada.
Steve Carley, Red Robin’s chief executive, said the results represent a fourth consecutive quarter of higher same-store sales and third consecutive quarter of higher earnings.
“Our team members continue to work with a sense of urgency to strengthen our business and build a foundation for long-term growth and profitability,” he said. “Our results to date in 2011 reflect our team members’ focus on achieving that goal.”
Momentum is continuing into the third quarter, the company said. Same-store sales for the first four weeks of the third quarter were up 0.5 percent at company locations.
For the year, Red Robin expects commodity inflation to be between 5 percent and 5.5 percent, primarily due to higher beef costs.
At the end of the second quarter, Red Robin opened six new company-owned locations and one new franchise restaurant, for a total of 321 company-owned and 137 franchised units.
For the year, a total of 12 new full-sized company restaurants will be opened, and franchisees are expected to open three to four new locations.
In addition, the company reiterated plans to open the first of its smaller prototype locations in the fourth quarter.
Additional smaller units are planned in 2012, when Red Robin projects that it will open between 12 and 15 new restaurants with both larger and smaller footprints.