El Pollo Loco (LOCO -3.5%) is trading lower after missing fourth quarter estimates last night.
El Pollo Loco is a Mexican themed fire-grilled chicken chain in the Western United States.
Fourth quarter adjusted earnings per share fell to $0.12 from $0.15 last year as comparable store sales fell 1.3%, just below estimates. The company has a rather poor track record at this juncture, having missed earnings and same store sales estimates three of the last four quarters.
The company guided for fiscal 2017 towards the low end of expectations, calling for earnings per share of $0.65-0.69, just below estimates, with same store sales flat to up 2% and ~6% unit growth.
"We remain focused on differentiating El Pollo Loco from other QSR and Fast Causal concepts. Initiatives such as our authentic advertising campaign, highlighting our differentiated offering, our recently launched mobile and online ordering app, our upcoming delivery test, and our future launch of a loyalty program are all aimed at increasing our value equation, thereby strengthening the brand and driving financial results."
El Pollo Loco has a ~$420 million market capitalization and trades at ~8.2x enterprise value over fiscal 2017 EBITDA estimates. The restaurant sector has a whole trades at ~11x EV/EBITDA.