Chipotle Mexican Grill’s first quarter profits trump Street View with strong digital sales

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(RTTNews) – Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (CMG) on Wednesday announced a first quarter profit increase as the casual fast food chain’s revenue jumped 23%, on digital sales, the changes menu and marketing. Profits for the quarter exceeded Wall Street analysts’ estimates, while revenues were in line with expectations.

Chipotle Mexican Grill’s first quarter profit reached $ 127.10 million or $ 4.45 per share, compared to $ 76.39 million or $ 2.70 per share last year.

Excluding special items, adjusted earnings for the quarter were $ 153.13 million or $ 5.36 per share, up from $ 87.16 million or $ 3.08 per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were forecasting earnings of $ 4.89 per share for the quarter. Analysts’ estimates generally exclude special items.

Chipotle’s revenue for the quarter rose 23.4% to $ 1.74 billion from $ 1.41 billion last year. Analysts had a consensus revenue estimate of $ 1.74 billion.

The company said revenue growth was driven by several new menu items, effective marketing, and the continued strength of digital sales.

Comparable restaurant sales increased 17.2%. Digital sales jumped 133.9% and accounted for 50.1% of sales.

Restaurant operating margin was 22.3%, an increase of 470 basis points. The company opened 40 new restaurants and closed 5 restaurants, bringing the total number of restaurants to 2,803.

Looking forward to the second quarter, Chipotle expects comparable restaurant sales to be between 20% and 30%.

CMG closed trading at $ 1,507.61, down $ 24.48 or 1.60%, on the NYSE. The stock, however, gained $ 11.52, or 0.76%, after hours.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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