California Pizza Kitchen Announces Financial Results for the Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2009

LOS ANGELES, Feb 18, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) — California Pizza Kitchen, Inc. /quotes/comstock/15*!cpki/quotes/nls/cpki (CPKI 13.70, -0.56, -3.93%) today reported revenues and net income for the fourth quarter and the fiscal year 2009 ending January 3, 2010.

Highlights for the 14-week fourth quarter of 2009 relative to the 13-week fourth quarter of 2008 were as follows:

— Total revenues increased 3.8% to $167.8 million

— Full service comparable restaurant sales decreased 5.8%

— Net loss of $9.9 million, or negative $0.41 per diluted share, including the effects of the non-cash impairment write-down of 13 full service restaurants and the related tax benefits.

— Net income of $4.1 million, or $0.17 per diluted share, excluding the effects of the non-cash impairment write-down of 13 full service restaurants and the related tax benefits (please refer to the reconciliation table).

Highlights for the 53-week fiscal year 2009 relative to the 52-week fiscal year 2008 were as follows:

— Total revenues decreased 1.8% to $664.7 million

— Full service comparable restaurant sales decreased 6.6%

— Net income of $4.6 million, or $0.19 per diluted share, including the effects of the non-cash impairment write-down of 13 full service restaurants and the related tax benefits.

— Net income of $18.6 million, or $0.77 per diluted share, excluding the effects of the non-cash impairment write-down of 13 full service restaurants and the related tax benefits (please refer to reconciliation table).

Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax, co-CEOs of California Pizza Kitchen, Inc., stated, “Despite sales challenges for new restaurants in the high unemployment states of California, Michigan and Florida, we were very pleased that our fourth quarter comparable sales and proforma earnings results were within our previously guided ranges. While the quarter benefited from easier comparisons, the year-over-year and sequential quarter improvements mark what we believe may be the first signs of a comp turnaround. Comparable sales improvements were widespread across our dine-in, take-out, and delivery channels, and we credit the turnaround to the successful launch of our wine, call center, and catering programs along with November’s new menu rollout. Looking towards 2010, we are cautiously optimistic that these programs and other new revenue initiatives such as our ‘Small Cravings Menu’ will continue to drive guest traffic and comparable sales.”

Rosenfield and Flax continued, “We were very proud to have been ranked the #1 ‘Most Recommended Casual Dining Chain’ in a recent independent marketing survey. This type of recognition adds to our confidence for future growth, not only with full service restaurants, but with our Kraft partnership, international and domestic franchising, and licensing. These businesses provide CPK with a unique model within the casual dining industry and the ability to balance our portfolio with higher margin revenue streams positions us to maximize financial performance and build shareholder value over time.”

Average weekly sales for the Company’s 196 full service restaurants were $57,949 in the fourth quarter of 2009 compared to $61,034 in the same quarter last year.

During the fourth quarter of 2009, one of the Company’s franchise partners opened the first California Pizza Kitchen in Cancun, which is the seventh location in Mexico.

The Company outlined its financial guidance for the first quarter of 2010 based on the following assumptions:

— Comparable restaurant sales between negative 3.0% and negative 4.0%

— Opening one international franchised full service restaurant

— Opening one domestic franchised restaurant

— Earnings estimated in the range of $0.05-$0.07 per diluted share

Additionally, the Company outlined guidance for fiscal 2010 based on the following assumptions:

— Comparable restaurant sales between negative 2% and 0%

— Opening eight new full service restaurants

— Opening eight international franchised full service restaurants

— Opening five domestic franchised restaurants

— Earnings estimated in the range of $0.68-$0.73 per diluted share

The Company will host a conference call today at approximately 4:30 pm ET. A webcast of the conference call can be accessed at www.cpk.com.

California Pizza Kitchen, Inc., founded in 1985, is a leading casual dining chain. The Company’s full service restaurants feature an imaginative line of hearth-baked pizzas, including the original BBQ Chicken Pizza, and a broad selection of distinctive pastas, salads, soups, appetizers and sandwiches. The average guest check for 2009 was approximately $14.49. As of February 18, 2010 the company operates, licenses or franchises 252 locations, of which 205 are company-owned and 47 operate under franchise or license agreements. The Company also has a licensing agreement with Kraft Pizza Company which manufactures and distributes a line of California Pizza Kitchen premium frozen products. More information about California Pizza Kitchen, Inc. can be found on the Company’s website at www.cpk.com.

This release includes certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include projections of earnings, revenue or other financial items, statements of the plans, strategies and objectives of management for future operations, statements concerning proposed new products or developments, statements regarding future economic conditions or performance, statements of belief and statements of assumptions underlying any of the foregoing. Forward-looking statements may include the words “may,” “will,” “estimate,” “intend,” “continue,” “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “guidance” and similar words.

This release also includes non-GAAP earnings per diluted share information. This measure is not based on any standardized methodology prescribed by U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) and is not necessarily comparable to similar measures presented by other companies. The Company believes that this non-GAAP information is useful as an additional means for investors to evaluate the Company’s operating performance, when reviewed in conjunction with the Company’s GAAP financial statements. This amount is not determined in accordance with GAAP and therefore, should not be used exclusively in evaluating the Company’s business and operations.

Investors are cautioned that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and, therefore, undue reliance should not be placed on them. Our actual results may and will likely differ materially from the expectations referred to herein. Among the key factors that may have a direct bearing on our operating results, performance and financial condition are deteriorating economic conditions, revenue from third party licensees and franchisees, changing consumer preferences and demands, the success of new initiatives aimed at revenue growth, the continued availability of qualified employees and our management team, the maintenance of reasonable food and supply costs, our exposure to the California market and numerous other matters discussed in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. California Pizza Kitchen undertakes no obligation to update or alter its forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.