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Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc. Flies Higher on Q4 Earnings

By Anders Bylund – Feb 4, 2014 at 5:37PM

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Buffalo Wild Wings took flight in after-hours trading, driven by a mixed fourth-quarter report with firm forward guidance.

Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD) just reported fourth-quarter results. It was a mixed bag, beating analyst estimates on some counts while missing elsewhere. But management's outlook is rosy, and there was nothing ambiguous about the market reaction. As investors pondered the report, shares jumped as much as 7.9% higher in after-hours trading.

Total revenue rose 12% year over year, landing at $342 million. Analysts were looking for more, setting their average target at $347 million. Company-owned sales increased 13%, and made up 94% of total revenue. Same-store sales increased 5.2% at Buffalo Wild's company-owned locations and 3.1% in franchised restaurants.

But the soft sales didn't hurt the bottom line. Earnings jumped 24% to $1.10 per share, beating Wall Street's $1.07 estimates.

All of these results were achieved in a 13-week quarter, and are compared to a 14-week quarter in the year-ago period. That's an artificial headwind for the company's growth figures as the quarter was 7.1% shorter. For example, total sales jumped 22% when adjusted for this calendar effect.

Looking ahead, Buffalo Wild plans to open nine company-owned and 13 franchised restaurants in the first quarter. International franchisees already opened two locations in Mexico in 2014.

"In addition to continued unit growth, net earnings will be driven by same-store sales momentum and continued operational diligence. We reaffirm our 20% net earnings growth goal for 2014," said CEO Sally Smith.

Anders Bylund has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Buffalo Wild Wings.

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