BLMN Earnings: Bloomin’ Brands Gains on Q4 Results, $350M Buyback
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BLMN Earnings: Bloomin’ Brands Gains on Q4 Results, $350M Buyback

Story Highlights

Bloomin’ Brands delivered a resilient performance for the fourth quarter. The restaurant operator also announced a share repurchase program worth $350 million.

Bloomin’ Brands (NASDAQ:BLMN) shares are in focus today after the casual dining restaurant operator delivered a mixed performance for the fourth quarter. Despite a year-over-year gain of 9.1%, revenue of $1.19 billion missed the cut by a narrow margin of $10 million. EPS of $0.75, on the other hand, outperformed expectations by $0.06.

A combination of efficiency gains, settlement of certain collective action wage and hour lawsuits, and higher average check per person helped the company slightly improve its restaurant-level operating margin to 16.4%. Further, an additional week during the year and the positive net impact of store openings and closures contributed to the rise in its top line.

Still, combined U.S. comparable restaurant sales trended lower by 0.2%, with declines across its Outback Steakhouse, Bonefish Grill, and Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar Brands. In contrast, Carrabba’s Italian Grill bucked the trend with 2.5% higher comparable sales.

For Fiscal Year 2024, BLMN expects U.S. comparable restaurant sales growth in the 0% to 2% bracket. Adjusted EPS for the year is anticipated to be in the range of $2.51 to $2.65. The company plans to open 40 to 45 new system-wide restaurants during the year. For the upcoming quarter, BLMN expects an adjusted EPS of $0.70 to $0.75. Importantly, the company expects U.S. comparable sales to decline by 0.5% to 2% in Q1 due to the impact of adverse weather.

Earlier, BLMN announced a quarterly dividend of $0.24 per share. The BLMN dividend is payable on March 20 to investors of record on March 6. The restaurant operator has also announced a new share repurchase program worth $350 million.

Is Bloomin’ Brands a Good Stock to Buy?

Today’s price decline comes after a nearly 11% rise in BLMN’s share price over the past three months. Overall, the Street has a Moderate Buy consensus rating on Bloomin’ Brands, and the average BLMN price target of $29.50 implies a 10.9% potential upside in the stock. However, analysts’ views on the stock could see a revision following today’s earnings report.

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