(Starbucks earnings report updated with more detail.)
SEATTLE (TheStreet) -- Starbucks (SBUX) beat fiscal third-quarter profit and revenue expectations on strong sales growth and increased store traffic.
Both top- and bottom-line results beat analysts' consensus, which had been for Starbucks to earn $258.8 million, or 34 cents per share, on revenue of $2.85 billion. Same-store sales -- or sales at stores open at least one year, a closely watched metric in the restaurant industry -- grew 8%, driven by a 6% increase in store traffic and 2% uptick in average ticket. Starbucks has been plagued by soaring coffee prices and famously raised prices by 17% in the recent quarter. CEO Howard Schultz said to expect fiscal 2012 earnings growth in range of 15% to 20%, to a range between $1.73 and $1.81 per share. For 2011, investors should expect Starbucks to earn $1.50 to $151 per share, the company said. Analysts called for EPS of $1.50 this fiscal year and $1.80 next fiscal year.
Starbucks also said to expect fiscal 2011 revenue growth around 10%, assuming same-store sales improvement at the high end of its target range of 3% to 7%. The company will add 600 net new stores, including 100 in the U.S. and 500 in international markets. Shares of Starbucks added 2.3% in after-hours trading Thursday. The stock closed higher by 2.6% during the regular trading session, getting a boost from Green Mountain Coffee Roasters' ( GMCR) better-than-expected third quarter profit and revenue figures.
In its earnings report Thursday, Starbucks did post a 15.7% increase in cost of sales, outpacing revenue growth, though the line item included occupancy costs. Schultz said that "strong traffic gains and sales leverage helped mitigate the impact of higher commodity costs" in the quarter ended July 3. Higher commodity costs, primarily for coffee, negatively impacted operating margin in the recent quarter by around 280 basis points, and EPS by 7 cents, Starbucks said. Starbucks' price hike echoed J.M. Smucker's ( SJM) move a day earlier when it raised coffee prices for the fourth time this year in response to soaring Arabica costs. Smucker, which makes Folgers and Millstone coffee brands and also licenses the Dunkin' Donuts ( DNKN) brand, raised prices on its coffee products by 11%, its largest price increase yet. Smucker has raised prices by 34% over the past year as it struggled to maintain margins amid soaring coffee costs. Coffee futures hit a three-decade high of $3.0615 per pound on May 3 but have come down somewhat from that price in recent trading sessions. The commodity most recently traded at $2.3885 per pound.
-- Written by Miriam Marcus Reimer in New York. >To contact the writer of this article, click here: Miriam Reimer. >To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/miriamsmarket. >To submit a news tip, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
>>See our new stock quote page.