Olive Garden Owner Rebounds as America Flocks to Restaurants
(Bloomberg) -- Darden Restaurants Inc., owner of Olive Garden and other restaurant chains, boosted sales 80% last quarter in regaining all the revenue it lost during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The company’s same-store sales, a key measure in the industry, anchored the gains with a 90% surge in the quarter spanning March to May, compared with the same period in 2020 when Americans isolated themselves.
Darden is benefiting from states continuing to ease virus restrictions for dining, while consumers spend their stimulus checks to treat themselves. The rebound in same-store sales brought them to just 0.5% below the level reached in the same quarter in 2019, the company reported on Thursday.
The shares climbed 2.6% at 9:40 a.m. in New York. The stock had gained 13% this year through Wednesday.
The company also forecast same-store sales for this fiscal year, which began this month, to gain by as much as 29%, topping estimates of 28%.
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