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Sept. 23, 2021, 7:23 a.m. EDT

Olive Garden parent beats earnings expectations, authorizes $750 million share buyback program

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By Tonya Garcia

Darden Restaurants Inc. /zigman2/quotes/200092615/composite DRI -2.54% stock rose 4.4% in Thursday premarket trading after the restaurant company reported fiscal first-quarter earnings that beat expectations and announced a new buyback program. Net income totaled $230.9 million, or $1.75 per share, up from $36.1 million, or 28 cents per share, last year. Sales totaled $2.306 billion, up from $1.527 billion last year. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $1.64 and sales of $2.240 billion. Same-restaurant sales rose 47.5%, beating the FactSet consensus for 44.3% growth, with Olive Garden up 37.1%, Longhorn Steakhouse up 47% and fine dining up 84.6%. Other chains in the Darden lineup include Yard House, The Capital Grille and Seasons 52. Darden declared a dividend of $1.10 per share payable on November 1, 2021 to shareholders of record at the close of business on October 8, 2021. And the company has authorized a new $750 million share buyback program, bringing the total authorization to about $1 billion. For fiscal 2022, Darden is guiding for sales of $9.4 billion to $9.6 billion, same-restaurant sales growth of 27% to 30% and EPS of $7.25 to $7.60. The FactSet consensus is for sales of $9.408 billion, same-restaurant sales growth of 30.2% and EPS of $7.43. Darden stock has run up 26.2% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.84% has gained 17% for the period.

/zigman2/quotes/200092615/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 139.37
-3.63 -2.54%
Volume: 1.40M
Jan. 18, 2022 4:03p
P/E Ratio
19.93
Dividend Yield
3.00%
Market Cap
$18.26 billion
Rev. per Employee
$54,757
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/zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime
US : S&P US
4,577.11
-85.74 -1.84%
Volume: 2.74B
Jan. 18, 2022 4:56p
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