Orlando-based Darden Restaurants reported a net income of $115.6 million for the second-quarter of its 2019 fiscal year.
The earnings equate to 92 cents per share, which met the per-share earnings expectations of Zacks Investment Research. During the same quarter last year, Darden earned 73 cents per share.
“We had another quarter of strong and steady performance by continuing to focus on being brilliant with the basics in our restaurants,” said Darden CEO Gene Lee. “We continued to grow market share profitably by strengthening and leveraging our competitive advantages, and our brands are making the appropriate investments while managing costs effectively.”
The earnings report showed sales at The Capital Grille grew 3.7 percent year-over-year, the largest gain among the company’s portfolio of restaurants. Other brands owned by Darden include Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse, Eddie V’s, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, Yard House, Seasons 52 and Bahama Breeze.
Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse and Eddie V’s also posted gains compared to Q2 2018, while Cheddar’s, Yard House, Seasons 52 and Bahama Breeze saw slight decreases.
Darden reported total sales of $1.97 billion for the quarter, an increase over the $1.88 billion in sales it produced in Q2 2018.
Olive Garden, the company’s largest chain, accounted for nearly $1 billion of the quarterly total, while Longhorn contributed another $412.6 million to the top-line numbers. Those two chains produced a combined $250.4 million in profit last quarter.
Per new estimates, Darden’s expects to produce between $5.60 and $5.70 in earnings per share in fiscal year 2019.
Through the first two quarters of the fiscal year, Darden has reported $4.03 billion in sales. The price of Darden stock has increased from $98.32 on Jan. 2 to $98.89 at the close of trading Monday. As of Tuesday afternoon, Darden stock had increased nearly 6 percent to $104.52.