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Napa Valley vintner group Duckhorn reports 73% earnings growth in fiscal 2021

The Duckhorn Portfolio Inc. (NYSE: NAPA), maker of ultrapremium and luxury wines such Duckhorn, Decoy and Kosta Browne, on Monday credited much of its 35.7% annual growth in fiscal fourth-quarter net sales to a rebound in the restaurant business as coronavirus restrictions eased across the country.

The Napa Valley-based producer, which became a public company March 18, reported $70.9 million in net sales for its quarter ended July 31, down from $52.2 million a year before. That growth was driven mainly by the 40.4% annual jump in cases sold, similar to the 41% rise for the company’s third quarter.

But that time frame corresponds with the February–July period last year, which included the shutdown for weeks or months of many restaurants nationwide as the pandemic took hold. Year-over-year growth for the fiscal third and fourth quarters in 2020 was 23% and 15%, respectively.

For fiscal 2021, net sales were $336.6 million, up 24.4% from a year before.

Fourth-quarter net income was $7.4 million, or 6 cents per diluted share, up from a net loss of $2.7 million, or 3 cents a share, a year before. Compensation and going-public costs weighed on the company’s bottom line in fiscal 2021.

Earnings for all of fiscal 2021 were $56.0 million, or 52 cents per diluted share, up nearly 73% from $32.4 million, or 32 cents a share the previoius year.

Though results have bounced back beyond where they ended in fiscal 2019 before the pandemic, the company is keeping an eye on the impact of the delta variant of the virus on hesitancy for consumers to return to restaurants, CEO Alex Ryan said on the investor conference call Monday.

The price of the company’s stock was $23.52 at the close of trading Monday, up 1.3% from Friday and nearly 37% since its debut.

Jeff Quackenbush covers wine, construction and real estate. Before the Business Journal, he wrote for Bay City News Service in San Francisco. He has a degree from Walla Walla University. Reach him at jquackenbush@busjrnl.com or 707-521-4256.

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