Shares of Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. RRGB were up 5.5% after hours on Wednesday after the restaurant chain offered a more upbeat full-year sales forecast and reported a surprise per-share profit for its first quarter and revenue that came in above expectations. Red Robin said it expected same-store sales gains of between 2% and 4% this year, and total revenue of “at least” $1.3 billion, which was slightly more bullish than a prior forecast for “approximately” $1.3 billion. Analysts polled by FactSet expected full-year sales of $1.29 billion, with a same-store sales increase of 4.2%. Red Robin also bumped its restaurant operating profit to at least 13.5%, up from an earlier outlook for at least 13%, but forecast higher costs and capital expenses. For its first quarter, the chain reported a net loss of $3.1 million, or 19 cents a share, compared with $3.1 million, or 20 cents a share, in the same quarter last year. Revenue rose to $418 million from $395.6 million in the prior-year quarter. Adjusted for items like litigation contingencies, severance and restaurant closure costs, Red Robin earned 25 cents a share. Same-store sales rose 8.6%. Analysts polled by FactSet expected a 57-cent adjusted per-share loss, on revenue of $405.6 million, with an 8.5% same-store sales increase.
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