Ruth's Hospitality Group (RUTH) Tops Q4 EPS by 3c

March 5, 2021 7:05 AM EST

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Ruth's Hospitality Group (NASDAQ: RUTH) reported Q4 EPS of $0.03, $0.03 better than the analyst estimate of $0.00. Revenue for the quarter came in at $77.4 million versus the consensus estimate of $77.76 million.

Highlights for the Fourth Quarter 2020

  • Total revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 was $77.4 million, compared to $135.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2019.
  • Net income in the fourth quarter of 2020 was $1.4 million, or $0.04 per diluted share, compared to net income of $14.5 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2019.
    • Net income in the fourth quarter of 2020 included a $2.5 million employee retention payroll tax credit, which reduced restaurant operating expenses; $322 thousand in severance costs and accelerated stock expense; $28 thousand in gain related to lease modifications; a $295 thousand impairment loss related to restaurant closures, and a $1.1 million income tax expense related to the impact of discrete income tax items. Net income in the fourth quarter of 2019 included $124 thousand in acquisition-related expenses associated with the previously completed acquisition of the three restaurants from our Philadelphia and Long Island franchisee and $374 thousand in closure costs associated with accelerating the closure of a restaurant in Washington, DC.
    • Excluding these items, non-GAAP diluted earnings per common share was $0.03 in the fourth quarter of 2020, compared to $0.52 in the fourth quarter of 2019. The Company believes that non-GAAP diluted earnings per common share provides a useful alternative measure of financial performance to improve comparability of diluted earnings per common share between periods. Investors are advised to see the attached Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Financial Measure table for additional information.

Cheryl Henry, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ruth's Hospitality Group, Inc., stated, “2020 was truly a challenging year for our Ruth’s Chris team and our franchisees. We managed through two significant shutdowns during the year, the first in late March, and the other most recently during our fourth quarter. Despite these challenges, I’m pleased that our amazing team and franchise partners displayed resilience and agility in the face of uncertainty, resulting in strong fourth quarter results.”

Henry added, “COVID has taught us flexibility and innovation, which includes new operating procedures at the restaurant level as well as a more flexible labor model, better capacity utilization, and the adoption of technology not only by us as an organization, but by our customers. With an iconic, 55-year old brand behind these efforts we are proud of where we are today and optimistic about the future.”

Leadership Update

The Company today announced that the Board of Directors has appointed Cheryl J. Henry, the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, to the role of Chairperson effective upon her re-election to the Board of Directors at the Annual Meeting to be held on May 25, 2021. Michael O’Donnell, currently Chairman of the Board, will step down at that time and continue to serve as a Director of Ruth’s Hospitality Group, Inc. upon his re-election. This is consistent with the Board’s long-term succession planning.

Henry said, “On behalf of the Company, I would like to thank Mike for his leadership and the contribution he has made as Chairman. I am very proud to have been asked by the Board to serve as Chairperson to continue our work for the benefit of our shareholders, team members and guests.”

Financial Outlook

Due to the ongoing uncertainty around the duration and severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company will not be providing financial guidance for fiscal year 2021 at this time.

For earnings history and earnings-related data on Ruth's Hospitality Group (RUTH) click here.

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