Olive Garden owner Darden (DRI) raises full-year revenue forecast after FQ3 beat

March 23, 2023 7:39 AM EDT

Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI) hiked its full-year revenue forecast after reporting better-than-expected results for its third quarter.

The company posted EPS of $2.34 on revenue of $2.8 billion, beating the average analyst estimate for earnings of $2.23 on sales of $2.73B. Overall, revenue rose 14% year-over-year while comparable sales increased by 11.7%, beating the +8.8% consensus, boosted by the 12.3% surge in comparable sales growth for the company’s Olive Garden franchise.

"Our ability to invest in pricing below inflation over time provides strong value to our guests and reinforces the power of our strategy and our restaurant teams' commitment to being brilliant with the basics," said Darden President & CEO Rick Cardenas.

Following a better-than-expected FQ3 report, DRI raised its FY revenue forecast to a range of $10.45-10.5B from the prior $10.3-10.45 and ahead of the consensus of $10.42B. The FY EPS is seen between $7.85 and $8.00, beating the average analyst estimate of $7.84. Finally, comparable sales are seen growing 6.5-7% for the full year, up from the prior forecast of +5-6.5% and ahead of expectations for +5.8%.

The company also declared a quarterly dividend of $1.21 per share, or $4.84 annualized.

Darden Restaurants shares are down almost 2% in pre-market Thursday.

By Senad Karaahmetovic

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