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Mark Krieger

 
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  • Update: Luby's Earnings Blow It Again [View article]
    why mess with LUB? because how many other restaurant companies actually sell for below book value, just 33% of sales and own the real estate on over 1/2 of its locations?

    No too many. As matter of fact, none at all. This implies that LUBy's shares are inefficiently priced , and provide an opportunity to exploit this phenomenon.

    The fact is, this company is fixable and wall street is treating it like it is unfixable. Management also has plenty of skin in the game with a 33% ownership stake, so their best interests should be aligned with all shareholders. You know what Warren says, when it is raining gold, don't put out thimbles, put out buckets. Right now, it might not seem like the rain is gold, but visionary thinkers can see past the noise and recognize the value.
    Dec 18, 2014. 07:22 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's reports FQ1 earnings [View news story]
    Maybe we will get more color from tomorrow's conference call and the information contained in the 1st quarter Supplemental Investor material.
    Dec 17, 2014. 06:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's reports FQ1 earnings [View news story]
    not a bad report at all: (1) revenues rose 1.1% despite the company's most challenging season (2) .2% same store sales increase at both Luby's cafeterias and Fuddruckers (3) Franchisee fees rose 6.7% from $1,500,000 to $1,600,000 (4) The company picked up two more culinary service contracts during the quarter and now service 26 locations. Sales rose 7% during the 1st quarter (4) they spent just $3.6 million in capital expenditures, but had $900,000 of extra expense for opening costs (5) There were reductions in certain cost centers-the G&A category saw a 50 basis point reduction while occupancy costs fell $100,000 from $4.7 m to $4.6 m

    Some negatives: (a) depreciation expense rose $700,000 to $5.1 million (b) cost of food jumped from 28.6% of sales to 29.2% (c)payroll costs climbed from 35.2% to 36.4% and other costs (maint/repair/utilites, adv.) rose from 18.9% to 19.6% (d) same store sales at the Cheeseburger in Paradise segment fell 6.7%
    Dec 17, 2014. 05:41 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    boring value investor: entrenched management/board is a problem. However if that wasn't the case, it wouldn't be a value stock any more. It would trade at twice the price it does now.

    Translation: the fact that management is entrenched, provides opportunity. It is something that can be changed/fixed and when that happens, the stock could easily double.
    Dec 17, 2014. 03:13 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ford - Backing Up The Truck On The Clueless Downgrade [View article]
    the downgrade was nothing but a "bash and buy" tactic, that most of us (who have been around the block a few times) can see right through.
    Dec 17, 2014. 10:03 AM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    management warned that it will sustain commodity cost pressures in certain categories, but they also indicated that they plan to implement modest price increases. So the two (higher commodity prices and increased menu prices) should effectively offset each other.

    Store level initiatives aimed at enhancing efficiency should also begin kicking in aiding the bottom line.

    The company hopes to maintain positive same store sales trends on its luby's cafeteria division, while turning its Fudd's division negative SSS in fiscal year 2014, to a positive number in its current 2015 fiscal year.
    Dec 17, 2014. 09:06 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    "they closed 21 locations, but opened 15 for a net loss of 6"..On the surface that does not look too good, but when analyzing it further it is more than palatable.

    The reason so, is they got rid of their ford pintos, and replaced them with Mercedes. The losers were replaced with winners. Winners cost a lot more.


    You get what you pay for.
    Dec 16, 2014. 08:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    One thing for sure. Their payroll costs are too high. At 35% of sales it is difficult to make money. They need to get this slashed down to at least 33%. In addition, why do they need three attorneys on the payroll anyways? (those guys all make big salaries) why not contract out your necessary legal work?

    Why do they need additional offices in Andover , Maryland and Arlington Texas. Why not consolidate all offices functions to their Houston headquarters? it is time to get lean and mean.
    Dec 16, 2014. 08:28 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Talisman +47% after buyout, but should Repsol have waited for a better deal? [View news story]
    if Repsol waited..it could of blown up in their face....especially if oil futures changed course and skyrocketed.
    Dec 16, 2014. 01:11 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    next month their dual ownership format, will increase 20% from 10 stores to 12 stores, with the addition of their Jackson, Mississippi grand opening. this will increase their percentage of dual concepts in their portfolio from 5.7% to 6.9%
    Dec 16, 2014. 11:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    Thanks Mr. Gill: you brought up basically the same points I did in your rebuttal. I guess it is safe to say we are on the same page on this one.

    One thing that ironically could help longs. If Luby's continues to languish operationally, they could decide to change course and put the company up for sale, or portions of it, to reward long suffering shareholders. This could be the catalyst that could finally lights the rocket ship. it could become an urgent theme.
    Dec 16, 2014. 10:19 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    why is their balance sheet horrendous? Their total assets are $275 million and their total liabilities are $100 million..... Their assets exceed their liabilities by a cool $175 million... what's wrong with that? http://bit.ly/1qW5fRS
    Dec 16, 2014. 09:27 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    Your disclosure indicates, you are not short, but may initiate a short position over the next 72 hours? Why would you bash a stock if you planned to short it ? By doing so, theoretically you would be driving down the price, and obtaining a much less favorable trade.

    If you short 1000 shares at $4.75 and cover at $4.00 you make a profit of $750..if the shares fall and you open a short at $4.25 and cover at $4.00, you only make $250... I would think if you wanted to short, you'd be talking the shares up so you could obtain a better price, not talking them down. What are your real intentions by writing this piece?
    Dec 16, 2014. 09:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    thanks for your article...you made some decent points, but your thoughts about shorting the shares are not logical. After all, aren't you supposed short stocks when they are high? Luby's has already dropped nearly 50% from its 52 week high and is sitting near multi year lows. Obviously it is not high anymore. In fact some would argue that it is downright low. Don't you have it backwards? You are supposed to buy low and sell high (or short high)?
    Dec 16, 2014. 08:59 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Luby's: I Can't Think Of A Single Reason To Buy This [View article]
    a few holes in your bearish thesis: (1) the last quarter (the 4th) did not have declining sales. Sales for the fourth quarter were actually slightly up (2) Analysts are not predicting much improvement for the balance of the current fiscal year and next year? First of all, it is singular- there is only one analyst who covers luby's, and his low expectations are a godsend, because they will be very easy to surpass. (3) The main reason for the earnings dive wasn't operational in nature, it was due to the impairments derived from the restructuring of its Cheeseburger in Paradise operations. That chain count was reduced from 23 units to 8 units (4) you failed to mention the company's culinary contracts division as well as its Fuddrucker's franchisee revenue stream. Both of these divisions are thriving. (5) the higher payroll numbers are temporary in nature-they are needed to staff new locations in the opening phases to work all the bugs out and ensure customers are well taken care of during their initial visits to the concepts. (6) what about all the real estate luby's owns? They own the buildings and underlying land on almost 100 of their 200 locations. That has to be a big plus.
    Dec 16, 2014. 08:52 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
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