What happened

Shares of Waitr (NASDAQ:WTRH) have popped today, up by 16% as of 1:45 p.m. EDT, after the company reported first-quarter earnings. The regional food delivery tech platform beat top-line expectations and said online order activity has jumped.

So what

Revenue in the first quarter came in at $44.2 million, slightly ahead of the $43.2 million in sales that analysts were modeling for. Net loss was $2.1 million, or $0.03 per share, which was exactly how much red ink Wall Street was expecting. Adjusted EBITDA was $3.7 million, compared to negative $9.9 million a year ago. Average daily orders in Q1 were approximately 37,500, and Waitr had over 2 million active diners at the end of the quarter.

Food in take out boxes

Image source: Getty Images.

"Since the COVID-19 outbreak intensified in the United States, we have implemented a number of measures to protect our local communities, diners, restaurant partners, drivers and employees," CEO Carl Grimstad said in a statement. "We began offering no-contact delivery for all restaurant orders, provided gloves, hand sanitizer and masks to our drivers, and continued to pay any employee or driver who is quarantined or contracts the coronavirus."

Now what

Waitr said that order activity decreased in mid-March but has since rebounded strongly and orders in April were "higher than pre-pandemic levels." Revenue for April should be around $20 million, which should yield adjusted EBITDA of over $4 million for the month.

The company had approximately $53 million in cash at the end of April and continues to improve revenue per order and cash flow, which Grimstad says will "stabilize and position the Company for the long term."