GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Feb. 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Meritage Hospitality Group Inc. (MHGU), one of the nation’s premier franchise restaurant operators, today reported preliminary financial results for the fiscal year ended December 30, 2018.
2018 Full-Year Highlights:
- Sales increased 39.3% to $435.3 million compared to $312.6 million last year.
- Earnings from Operations increased 75.9% to $25.4 million compared to $14.4 million last year.
- Net Income increased 45.6% to $13.2 million compared to $9.0 million last year.
- Consolidated EBITDA (a non-GAAP measure) increased 50.3% to $39.7 million compared to $26.4 million last year.
- The Company developed or acquired a net of 62 restaurants during the year, to finish with 317 restaurants in operation across 16 states.
“Our performance in 2018 was strong, resulting in a record year of profitable growth for the Company on all financial metrics highlighted above. We continued to invest and transform our restaurant business through modernization and new locations, offering guests more conveniences. Importantly, our restaurant operations exceeded expectations for the year, a tribute to our 317 general managers and restaurant operating teams. Results included the incremental impact of 10 new restaurant locations, 14 renovations and the integration of 56 restaurants acquired during the year. Looking ahead to 2019, we are forecasting another year of solid sales and earnings growth, driven by people development, guest count growth and restaurant modernization programs. Operational excellence continues to be our primary focus, utilizing the Company’s unique operating platform and restaurant development expertise, while delivering on the Wendy’s brand promise of quality, convenience, and value.,” stated Meritage CEO Robert Schermer, Jr.
Fourth Quarter 2018 Highlights:
- Sales increased 26.4% to $107.8 million compared to sales of $85.2 million for the same period last year.
- Earnings from Operations increased 261.4% to $6.0 million compared to $1.7 million for the same period last year.
- Net Income increased 56.3% to $2.4 million compared to $1.6 million for the same period last year.
- Consolidated EBITDA (a non-GAAP measure) increased 121.3% to $10.1 million compared to $4.6 million last year.
Meritage plans to continue its extensive capital investment and development program in 2019 with up to 16 new and 23 renovated locations made to the Company’s existing restaurant portfolio across sixteen states.
Company 2019 Full-Year Financial Outlook: Strong Growth Ahead
- Sales growth of +10 to 20%
- Earnings from Operations growth of +10% to 20%
- Net Earnings growth of +10% to 20%
- EBITDA growth of +10% to 20%
Meritage continues to distinguish itself as a leader and innovator in the franchise restaurant segment, striving for best in class results through a performance based culture committed to operational excellence, strategic acquisitions and real estate development.
Meritage Hospitality Group is one of the nation’s premier restaurant operators, currently with 318 restaurants in operation located in Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. Meritage is headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, operating with a workforce of approximately 10,000 employees. The Company has approximately 6.2 million (basic) common shares outstanding. The Company’s public filings can be viewed at www.otcmarkets.com, under the stock symbol MHGU, or the Company’s website www.meritagehospitality.com.
SAFE HARBOR STATEMENT
Certain information in this new release, particularly information regarding future economic performance and finances, and plans, expectations and objectives of management, constitutes forward-looking statements. Factors set forth in our Safe Harbor Statement, in addition to other possible factors not listed, could affect the Company’s actual results and cause such results to differ materially from those expressed in forward-looking statements. Please review the Company’s Safe Harbor Statement at http://www.meritagehospitality.com.
Robert E. Schermer, Jr., CEO
Meritage Hospitality Group Inc.