Noodles trims losses as sales improve

BROOMFIELD — Noodles & Co. (Nasdaq: NDLS) posted a net loss of $2 million in the first quarter of 2021, but sales are improving, and the company said positive momentum is building. 

The Broomfield-based fast-casual pasta chain improved its bottom line compared with the same period last year, when losses totaled about $5.8 million.

Sales in the first quarter of 2021 were $109.6 million, up from $100.3 million in the first quarter of 2020. 

Comparable company-owned restaurant sales grew by 10.5% year over year. 

“Momentum accelerated throughout the first quarter and has continued into the second quarter,” Noodles CEO Dave Boennighausen said in a prepared statement. “Average unit volumes increased to an all-time record level of $1.35 million during our April fiscal period, nearly 13% above the same pre-COVID period in 2019.

“While we will continue to remain nimble in the face of continued uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, our recent results and improvement we are seeing in metrics across the organization give us confidence that we will continue to build upon the digital sales growth gained during the last year, even as we see a return to our dine-in business,” he added.

Noodles is pursuing an aggressive franchise expansion strategy, which it plans to continue throughout the coming years.

“Our 2019 and 2020 new restaurant openings as a group continue to have the best sales performance in our history, and we are making strong progress in building our pipeline to achieve 7% annual system-wide unit growth in 2022 and at least 10% shortly thereafter,” Boennighausen said. 

The company did not provide full financial guidance for the remainder of 2021 but said it plans to open 10 to 15 new restaurants systemwide in 2021, including eight to 11 company-owned locations.

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BROOMFIELD — Noodles & Co. (Nasdaq: NDLS) posted a net loss of $2 million in the first quarter of 2021, but sales are improving, and the company said positive momentum is building. 

The Broomfield-based fast-casual pasta chain improved its bottom line compared with the same period last year, when losses totaled about $5.8 million.

Sales in the first quarter of 2021 were $109.6 million, up from $100.3 million in the first quarter of 2020. 

Comparable company-owned restaurant sales grew by 10.5% year over year. 

“Momentum accelerated throughout the first quarter and has continued into the second quarter,” Noodles CEO Dave Boennighausen said in a prepared statement. “Average unit volumes increased to an all-time record level of $1.35 million during our April fiscal period, nearly 13% above the same pre-COVID period in 2019.

“While we will continue to remain nimble in the face of continued uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, our recent results and improvement we are seeing in metrics across the organization give us confidence that we will continue to build upon the digital sales growth gained during the last year, even as we see a return to our dine-in business,” he added.

Noodles is pursuing an aggressive franchise expansion strategy, which it plans to continue throughout the coming years.

“Our 2019 and 2020 new restaurant openings as a group continue to have the best sales performance in our history, and we are making strong progress in building our pipeline to achieve 7% annual system-wide unit growth in 2022 and at least 10% shortly thereafter,” Boennighausen said. 

The company…