Industry News | October 31, 2002

Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill Announces Third Numbers

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Rubio's® Restaurants, Inc. (Nasdaq:RUBO) today announced that revenue of $30.8 million for the 13 weeks ended September 29, 2002 increased 2.5% over revenue of $30.0 million for the same period last year. Year-to-date revenue of $91.4 million increased 6.8% over revenue of $85.5 million for the same period last year.

Comparable store sales for the third quarter of 2002 increased 1.2% over the third quarter of last year for company-owned locations and 0.9% system-wide. Year-to-date comparable store sales increased 1.3% compared to last year for company-owned locations and 1.2% system-wide. The 1.2% comparable store sales growth marks the fourth consecutive quarter of positive comparable store sales.

Rubio’s also announced pro forma net income of $1,002,000 or $0.11 per share for the third quarter of 2002, which increased 41% compared to net income of $709,000 or $0.08 per share for the same period a year ago. The pro forma earnings per share of $0.11 exceeded the company's previously announced guidance of $0.09-$0.10 per share. Year-to-date, pro forma net income has increased 89% to $2.6 million or $0.28 per share, compared to $1.4 million or $0.15 per share last year.

Rubio’s closed one location as part of a closing plan announced in 2001 and had no new restaurant openings in the third quarter.

The roll-out of the brand repositioning is continuing as planned. As of October 15, all traditional locations in the San Diego market are currently under the new Rubio's "Fresh Mexican Grill" name and have the upgraded menu and salsa bar in place. Rubio’s currently expects the repositioning to be implemented in all stores by the end of the first quarter of 2003.

Looking forward, Rubio’s currently expects fourth quarter EPS to be a loss of $(0.02) to $0.00, or breakeven, compared to pro forma loss per share for the fourth quarter last year of $(0.08), excluding the loss on special charges. Comparable store sales for the fourth quarter of 2002 are expected to be 2.0%-3.0% positive. The company expects full-year pro forma 2002 EPS in the $0.26 - $0.28 range, an increase over previously announced guidance of $0.24- $0.27 per share. The company expects to open three new locations in the fourth quarter, of which two, previously mentioned, have already opened.

Rubio's Fresh Mexican Grill® operates 134 company-owned restaurants in the high-quality, quick-service Mexican segment in California, Arizona, Utah and Colorado, and seven franchised restaurants in Nevada, California, and Portland.