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Shares in Chipotle plunge more than 5%, after soft same-store sales

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Investing.com -- Shares in Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc (NYSE:CMG) plunged more than 5% in after-hours trading after the multinational chain restaurant failed to reach expectations with its same-store sales during the first quarter.

The Denver-based company, which has more than 1,800 restaurants worldwide, posted a 10.4% increase in same-store sales during the first three months of the year, below estimates for growth of 11.8%. Chipotle did report revenues of $1.09 billion for the first quarter, a 20.4% increase. The growth was driven by strong sales among its new restaurants, of which it opened 49 throughout the quarter.

"We are very proud of our start to 2015, as our average sales volumes reached a record $2.5 million per restaurant. We attribute this success to our unique food culture and people culture, which are the driving forces to create a new fast food model," Chipotle founder, chairman and co-CEO Steve Ellis said in a statement.

Increases in pork costs and rising prices of other commodities also presented difficulties for Chipotle during the period.

"The quarter was not without its challenges however, as we suspended one of our primary pork suppliers and are exploring options to increase the supply of pork that meets our high standards. But we remain confident that higher quality, Responsibly Raised® ingredients taste better and will continue to resonate with our customers," Ellis added.

Still, Chipotle reported net income of $122.6 million for the quarter, an increase of 47.6% and a restaurant-level operating margin of 27.5%, an increase of 160 basis points.

"Our teams of top performers continue to create extraordinary customer experiences in our restaurants, which generates customer loyalty and attracts new customers. We are very pleased with our field leadership's ability to empower restaurant teams and develop new leaders," co-CEO Monty Moran said in a statement.

Shares in Chipotle tumbled 35.58 points or 5.14% in after-hours trading to 656.94. Earlier, Chipotle gained 5.59 or 0.81% to 692.52 ahead of the release.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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