NEWPORT BEACH, CALIF. – Restaurant sales at the Chipotle Mexican Grill have recovered nearly 80% from pre-pandemic levels, said Brian R. Niccol, chief executive, during a call Oct. 21 to discuss the results of the third trimester.
“While the impacts of COVID will likely persist for a few more quarters, we hope the worst is behind us and society can soon return to a more normal environment,” he said.
Digital orders, an introduction of Smoked Briscuit, and sales of Chipotlane also boosted the Newport Beach-based restaurant chain in the quarter ended September 30. share, in the third quarter of the previous year. Revenue increased 22% to $ 1.95 billion from $ 1.6 billion. Comparable restaurant sales increased 15%. Digital sales increased 9% to $ 840.4 million and accounted for 43% of total sales.
“Currently around 65% of our customers use the restaurant as their primary access point, almost 20% use digital as their primary channel and the remaining 15% to 20% use both channels,” said Niccol. “We are encouraged by this momentum as it offers us several future opportunities, including the possibility of converting more of our customers in restaurants into more frequent digital users. “
Thirty-six of the 41 new restaurants opened in the quarter included a Chipotlane, a steering wheel-mounted digital pickup lane.
“Our marketing team, our digital team, continue to bring customers to this access point because it’s so convenient,” said Niccol. “I think, in fact, I just saw some numbers on this, where the time between your order and the preparation of your food is now less than 10 minutes in our company. So we got even faster in that space to make it even more convenient, and just to give you a perspective, a few quarters ago it was in the 12 minute range.
“The initial customer feedback on this entry, which is slated to run until November, has been very positive, and we’re delighted to see an increase in both check and transaction sizes,” Niccol said.
Inflationary pressure in the quarter came from raw material shortages and labor costs, not only at Chipotle but also among suppliers, said John R. Hartung, chief financial officer.
“I would say the inflation in the quarter was not that bad,” he said. “It was mid single-digit inflation.”
When the dining rooms reopened, Chipotle needed new workers to keep up with demand.
“And it was more difficult than we had hoped, but luckily I think we’ve taken a lot of good steps where we now have a lot of our restaurants on a good footing,” Niccol said.
In the nine months ended September 30, Chipotle achieved net income of $ 519.5 million, or $ 18.46 per share on common stock, compared with $ 164.8 million, or $ 5.91 per share. share, at the same period of the previous year. Nine-month total revenue increased 28% to $ 5.59 billion from $ 4.38 billion.