Buffalo Wild Wings Serves Up Tasty Earnings

Buffalo Wild Wings (NASDAQ: BWLD  ) reported fiscal 2014 first-quarter earnings that topped analyst estimates after the market closed today. For the quarter ending March 30, the fast-casual chain posted a profit of $1.49 per share, up more than 71% from $0.87 per share during the same period a year ago. That was also significantly better than analysts' estimates for earnings-per-share of $1.34 in the quarter. Revenue also came in stronger than expected -- up nearly 21% to $367.9 million in the period. For comparison, Wall Street was looking for quarterly revenue of just $362.9 million.

These results were driven by same-store sales growth of 6.6% at company-owned restaurants and 5% comps growth at franchised locations during the period. "Strong net earnings growth is primarily attributable to 46 additional company-owned restaurants compared to the prior year, the strength of same-store sales, and a 440-basis point improvement in cost of sales that was the result of significantly lower traditional chicken wing prices and our July 2013 transition to selling wings by portion," said Sally Smith, Buffalo Wild Wings chief executive.

Management expects results for the current quarter to remain strong as more customers visit its restaurants for key sporting events including the NBA and NHL playoffs. Shares of Buffalo Wild Wings were higher by more than 4% in after hours trading on the news, with the stock priced at around $139 as of 4:30 p.m. on Monday.

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  • Report this Comment On April 29, 2014, at 10:16 AM, CraigKneller wrote:

    1. Buffalo has emerged as the Walmart of Sports Bars. Just like Sally Smith (CEO) said, 3000 locations around the world are the vision. Outside of the Heartland, "The Sports Bar" is a Civic Institution in America; its' the only thing that rallies me and my neighbor to sit under one roof and root for a common cause. As OTB is to Horse Racing; the Sports Bar is to being in the Ballpark. Its' a place with tremendous importance in this country in the next 25 years. And if it sells in America; it will be poured down the throats of our Allies Nations throughout the world; no different than Fashion or Fast Food.

    1. Buffalo has to get more serious about Sound. There are two technologies that need to be evaluated for inclusion in all corporate/franchises. When I am chugging Beers and downing Wings, I need Sound. One technology you will find in all "Recovery Room, Albany, NY" locations, is sound at the tables. At this small chain; the TV screens are numbered; and a sound box they place on the table lines up to numbered televisions, and you can press the button to get sound that corresponds to the TV of your choice. The second technology to be considered was used at SuperBowl Media Day in Newark, New Jersey; numbered screens with a handheld device that was for each individual. Each person in the Arena could choose the sound of their choice on TV screens corresponding to interviews of Peyton, Marshon, or anyone else; as opposed to a table of 4 having to select a TV show; each diner can choose whatever the heck they want. Buffalo has to make a serious commitment to the sports fan; and it begins with sound. Until Buffalo offers Sound; its' a family theme restaurant that markets around Sports. A Sports Bar offers Sound-that simple. It would be a travesty to the integrity of sports to have the worldwide leader in sports bars not offer sports. Possibly create a rental fee; opening another huge source of revenue. To get from 2.6B to 6B (where I see it); it starts with Sound.

    2. I need to drive by a stand-alone restaurant and know what will be the Main Event. Buffalo does not care about informing customer what the Main Event is. Again, its’ lack the conviction and passion of a Sports Bar. Its' another mistake. They figure their restaurant will fill up anyway; so what's the difference. The difference is a place called "Miller's Sports Bar, Paramus, New Jersey." This chain has a sports bar that not only fills up the tables just like Buffalo on a Saturday night; it has 300-500 people standing on their feet pounding beers on a Friday night or Saturday night. That's a sports bar in a new world where picking up women can occur at a sports bar. But this Miller's brings in 500 a night, over and over again. Plus, this joint has more women than men; the hallmark of a cosmopolitan sports bar. Wherever there is the prospect of Big Money; there are women. The suggestion is to put flags of the team that will be the Main Event on the property on Game Day so drive-bys can pull over and be enthusiastic with their fellow fans. I need to drive buy and see the Flag of my team; so I know who owns the Big Screens that night; and most important where I can find fellowship. Buffalo does not care about fellowship thus far. A buck is a buck to them. A Jet buck is not the same as a Giant buck. A Cub buck is not the same as a White Sox buck. Who owns the House? How can you tell me?

    3. Buffalo has to land in the Big Leagues- the High Rent Districts. The Franchisees can’t afford the risk; it has to be Corporate.

    4. Experiment with some kind of social networking through Facebook or the like; that gets people on the same team in the room together to enjoy sport in the real world. It would be great if Buffalo went the extra mile to build fellowship in the real world through a common denominator ("The Team"). And it would be great if they published in the American Daily Newspaper timetables of who owns the House; college or pro; so fans can go their neighborhood Buffalo and be their with their Brother-In-Sports.

    5. I like everything else at Buffalo. The look, the menu, the food, the prices, the beer list; and the outdoor space on stand-alone buildings. I just am frustrated about their lack of commitment to the content they build their fortune around.

  • Report this Comment On April 29, 2014, at 10:35 AM, CraigKneller wrote:

    The only shot in hell Buffalo has to get that P/E down from 35 to 15 is by selling Sound. Can't be more simple than that.

    There should be two way to get Sound:

    1. Direct from Buffalo's web site- if they used the SuperBowl Media Day method with individual Sound units.

    2. Rent Sound Boxes at the Restaurant at every Buffalo Table on the planet

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Tamara Rutter

I've been an analytical writer for The Motley Fool since 2011. I cover the sectors of Consumer Goods, Technology, and Industrials. Connect with me on Twitter using the handle, @TamaraRutter -- I'd love to hear from you!

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Buffalo Wild Wings CAPS Rating: ****