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Robust financials, omnichannel may help diffuse second-wave damage: Hardcastle

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Westlife Development Limited, owner of Hardcastle Restaurants Pvt. Ltd. (HRPL), the master franchisee of McDonald’s restaurants in West and South India, clocked revenues of Rs 3575.9 million registering a 6.3% YoY growth in Q4, FY21, it said in an earnings statement.

Sales were driven by an almost complete recovery in dine-in and an impressive 142% growth across the company’s convenience channels. Revenues from McDelivery and Drive Thru saw a YoY growth of 26% and 81% respectively, the company said. The company recorded its highest ever McDelivery Sales in March 2021 and the sales through the on-the-go channel grew over three times in the last three quarters.

This strong sales acceleration was coupled with cost leadership that aided a 91-bps growth in Gross Margin on a YoY basis and landed at 66.5%. The company also grew its Restaurant Operating Margins by a whopping 527 bps that stood at a five-year high of 16.4%, the statement said. Fixed cost reduction coupled with a judicious control resulted in a significant improvement in the company’s Operating EBITDA. It stood at Rs 324.5 million for the quarter, up from Rs 195.8 million same quarter last year – a strong jump of 65.7%.

All the above resulted in a net profit of Rs 21 million as compared to a loss of Rs 166.5 million in the same quarter last year.

The strong momentum over the last two quarters helped the company wipe away 100% losses of the first half of FY21, the company said. The company exited the year with a positive cash flow and a strong net debt position that puts the company in strong stead to navigate uncertainties and challenges that lie ahead.

Commenting on the results, Amit Jatia, Vice-Chairman of Westlife Development Limited, said, “We are pleased to be closing FY21 on a strong note with a robust business recovery. It was a challenging but inspiring year that gave us a chance to consolidate our strengths and create new competitive advantages. We did some exemplary work on the cost leadership front and strengthened our omni-channel strategy. We believe we are stronger than ever and have all the arms in our arsenal to confidently navigate in this Volatile Uncertain Complex and Ambiguous world.”

After a COVID induced blip in 2020, the company also got back on track with its expansion plan, much in line with its vision 2022 commitment. It opened a new flagship restaurant this quarter at the departure terminal of T2 international airport in Mumbai, that trended very well through the quarter.

Reinforcing its commitment towards the well-being if its employees, Westlife Development recently announced that it will facilitate and pay for the vaccination its 10,000 employees. The company has already completed the vaccination drive for its employees in the age group of 45 years and above.

Despite the lurking challenges of the pandemic, the company has entered the new-year with a good momentum and a balance sheet that puts it in a strong position in the QSR industry. It is watching the developments with regard to the second wave closely. With a strong omni-channel strategy and constant rising brand trust, it is confident of navigating the challenges effectively.

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Indiaretailing Bureau

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