Papa John's (PZZA 1.49%) on Tuesday told investors that sales in most of its global markets, including the U.S., are humming along right now despite major consumer demand shifts from the COVID-19 outbreak.
Revenue rose 3% globally through late February and was up 2.3% in the three months ended March 29, a period that includes widespread restaurant closures in North America.
In a press release, executives noted that social distancing efforts have disrupted sales by canceling large gatherings and sporting events that typically support pizza demand. But this slump has been offset by surging demand for pizza delivered to homes. "Our international and domestic businesses have performed well, as customers and communities rely on us and others in the food delivery industry," CEO Rob Lynch said.
Despite the generally strong results, Papa John's withdrew its 2020 outlook, citing uncertainties around store closures and the path that the coronavirus outbreak ultimately takes. Roughly 350 of its over 2,100 international franchised stores are currently closed, for example, principally in Ireland, Peru, and the Philippines. Investors will get a more detailed look at sales and earnings trends when the company posts its official first-quarter results in early May.