Industry News | January 10, 2017

Del Taco's Sales Up More than 5 Percent in 4Q

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Del Taco Restaurants, Inc., the second largest Mexican-American quick-service chain by units in the U.S., operating restaurants under the name Del Taco, announced preliminary unaudited fiscal fourth quarter and fiscal year 2016 sales results ahead of its presentation at the ICR Conference.

The fiscal fourth quarter and fiscal year 2016 ended January 3 consisted of a 17- and 53-week period, respectively. Comparable restaurant sales growth for the 17th and 53rd week was calculated by comparing it to the “like week” in the prior year.

Sales Highlights for Fiscal Fourth Quarter 2016

System-wide comparable restaurant sales growth of approximately 5.5 percent and company-owned comparable restaurant sales growth of approximately 5.3 percent, marking the 13th and 18th consecutive quarter of gains, respectively.

Company-owned comparable restaurant sales growth comprised check growth of 3.3 percent, including nearly 1 percent of menu mix growth, and 2 percent transaction growth.

Total revenue of approximately $150.2 million, representing 12.6 percent growth from the fiscal fourth quarter of 2015. Week 17 of the fiscal fourth quarter contributed $8.3 million to total revenue. On a 16 week basis, which excludes the additional 17th week, total revenue growth was 6.4 percent from the fiscal fourth quarter of 2015.

Company restaurant sales of approximately $144.4 million, representing 12.7 percent growth from the fiscal fourth quarter of 2015. Week 17 of the fiscal fourth quarter contributed $8 million to company restaurant sales. On a 16-week basis, which excludes additional 17th week, company restaurant sales growth was 6.5 percent from the fiscal fourth quarter of 2015.

Sales Highlights for Fiscal Year 2016

System-wide comparable restaurant sales growth of approximately 4.8 percent and company-owned comparable restaurant sales growth of approximately 4.7 percent, marking the fourth consecutive year of gains.

Company-owned comparable restaurant sales growth comprised check growth of 4.5 percent, including approximately 1 percent of menu mix growth, and 0.2 percent transaction growth.

Total revenue of approximately $452.1 million, representing 6.6 percent growth from fiscal year 2015. Week 53 of the fiscal fourth quarter contributed $8.3 million to total revenue. On a 52 week basis, which excludes the additional 53rd week, total revenue growth was 4.7 percent from fiscal year 2015.

Company restaurant sales of approximately $434.1 million, representing 6.5 percent growth from fiscal year 2015. Week 53 of the fiscal year 2016 contributed $8 million to company restaurant sales. On a 52-week basis, which excludes the additional 53rd week, company restaurant sales growth was 4.5 percent from fiscal year 2015.

The expected sales results are preliminary and unaudited, have not been reviewed by our independent registered public accountants, and remain subject to the completion of normal quarter-end accounting procedures and adjustments and are subject to change. The company expects to release financial and operating results for its fiscal fourth quarter and fiscal year ended January 3 during March 2017.

Paul J.B. Murphy, III, chief executive officer of Del Taco, says, “We believe our 5.5 percent comparable restaurant sales performance for the fiscal fourth quarter, representing 11.3 percent on a two year basis, will place us among select company within the restaurant industry and we thank all of our team members for their contributions to these outstanding results. 2016 marked another successful year at Del Taco during which we continued to elevate and solidify our [quick-service] positioning through solid execution and product innovation across our tiered menu strategy. In particular, our June launch of Fresh Combined Solutions with our new Del Taco product and the recent launch of Platos, our first occasion based food platform, combined to drive strong transaction trends and menu mix improvement during the fiscal fourth quarter. Menu mix improved nearly 1 percent despite lapping more than 2 percent of menu mix growth in the year ago quarter driven by the launch of Grilled Carne Asada steak. Looking ahead to 2017, we intend to build on the success of our Fresh Combined Solutions Strategy as we take our brand to the next level.”

Restaurant Development

There were 13 new system-wide openings during fiscal year 2016, including seven during the fiscal fourth quarter. As of January 3 the Del Taco system consisted of 551 system wide restaurants across 15 states, including 310 company-operated and 241 franchised locations.

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by QSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.

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