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The Cheesecake Factory releases preliminary first-quarter same-store sales figures.

Cheesecake Factory says March same-store sales fell 46% in coronavirus impact

Company says off-premise model ‘operating sustainably’ with annualized average sales of $3M per unit

The Cheesecake Factory Inc.’s first quarter same-store sales fell about 13% amid coronavirus restrictions, with March sales declining about 46%, the company said late Thursday.

The Calabasas Hills, Calif.-based restaurant company released preliminary first-quarter same-store sales figures, adding that it has temporarily closed 30 units, including three Cheesecake Factory restaurants.

“The Cheesecake Factory restaurants have a long-standing business in the off-premise channel, which enabled a quick pivot to an off-premise-only operating model in all open restaurants as required by state and local officials,” the company said in a statement.

Off-premise sales recently accelerated about 85% since the fiscal fourth quarter 2019 level, the company added.

“On an annualized basis, current off-premise sales would equate to over $3 million per unit, on average,” the statement said. “The restaurants are operating sustainably at present under this model.”

Before states and cities imposed COVID-19 restrictions on dining-room service in mid-March, February same-store sales growth was about 3%, the Cheesecake Factory said.

Earlier, The Cheesecake Factory announced it was furloughing 41,000 hourly workers, reducing the pay of executives by 20% and warning landlords it would not make April lease payments.

For the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, The Cheesecake Factory’s net income rose to $48.7 million, or $1.10 per share, from $16.2 million, or 35 cents per share, in the same period last year. Revenues increased 18.6% to $694 million from $585.2 million in the prior-year quarter.

The company has 294 restaurants in the United States and Canada under brands that include The Cheesecake Factory, North Italia and a collection within the Fox Restaurant Concepts subsidiary. The company has international licensing agreements for 26 Cheesecake Factory restaurants.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected]

Follow him on Twitter: @RonRuggless

TAGS: Coronavirus
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