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SEC Filings

10-K
CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL INC filed this Form 10-K on 02/08/2018
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regulation, higher employment taxes or social benefit costs or local market conditions. In addition, restaurants outside the U.S. have had higher construction, occupancy and food costs than restaurants in existing markets, and we may have difficulty finding reliable suppliers or distributors or ones that can provide us, either initially or over time, with adequate supplies of ingredients meeting our quality standards. Additional costs or difficulties from any of the foregoing factors may adversely impact the operating results of our international markets. Markets outside the U.S. may also have regulatory differences with the U.S. with which we are not familiar, or that subject us to significant additional expense or to which we are not able to successfully adapt, which may have a particularly adverse impact on our sales or profitability in those markets and could adversely impact our overall results. For example, a new privacy regulation in the European Union called the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, is scheduled to become effective in May 2018 and requires companies to meet new requirements regarding the handling of personal data, and failure to meet GDPR requirements could result in penalties of up to 4% of our worldwide revenue. Our overall results may also be negatively affected by currency risk on the transactions in other currencies and translation adjustments resulting from the conversion of our international financial results into the U.S. dollar.

Pizzeria Locale, Tasty Made and other new restaurant concepts may not contribute to our growth.

We believe that the fundamental principles on which our restaurants are based – finding better ingredients, preparing them using classic techniques in front of the customer, and serving them in an interactive format with great teams dedicated to providing an excellent dining experience – can be adapted to cuisines other than the food served at Chipotle. In order to see how our model works when we use different ingredients and a different style of food, we opened a number of ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen restaurants beginning in 2011, and one Tasty Made burger restaurant in Ohio in 2016. We enlisted an equity partner to help us refine the Tasty Made brand in 2017.  We also have a majority ownership interest in a company operating seven fast casual Pizzeria Locale restaurants in Denver, Colorado, Kansas City, Missouri and Cincinnati, Ohio, and we plan to assist with the further expansion of Pizzeria Locale in the future. ShopHouse was not able to achieve a level of sales and profitability that made it attractive to us for future investment, and we recognized a $14.5 million non-cash impairment charge, representing substantially all of the value of long-lived assets of ShopHouse, during the year ended December 31, 2016, and closed all of the ShopHouse locations in the first half of 2017. Furthermore, Pizzeria Locale and Tasty Made are new brands and have lower brand awareness, lower sales and less operating experience than most Chipotle restaurants, and may also not achieve restaurant economics that make them attractive for further investment in the future.  These concepts also operate in markets in which there are numerous competitors, including a number of large and well-known brands, and a number of other companies or individuals in the restaurant industry have recently opened or invested in fast-casual pizza concepts or so-called “better burger” restaurants.

Notwithstanding our growth plans for Tasty Made, our investment in Pizzeria Locale, and exploration of other restaurant brand opportunities, our immediate focus will remain on thoughtfully growing the Chipotle brand. As a result, we do not expect Pizzeria Locale, Tasty Made or other concepts to contribute to our growth in a meaningful way for at least the next several years.  We may also determine not to move forward with any further expansion of Tasty Made or Pizzeria Locale. These decisions would each limit our overall growth potential over the long term as well. Additionally, the expansion of Tasty Made or Pizzeria Locale or investments in other restaurant concepts each might distract our management, which could have an adverse impact on our core Chipotle business.

Our failure to manage our restaurant growth effectively could harm our business and operating results.

As described elsewhere in this report, our plans call for a significant number of new restaurants. Our existing restaurant management systems, financial and management controls, information systems and personnel may be inadequate to support our expansion, and managing our growth effectively will require us to continue to enhance these systems, procedures and controls, as well as to hire, train and retain general managers, crew and corporate staff. We also are continuing to attempt to improve our field management in an effort to improve restaurant operations and develop additional top performing general managers more quickly. We may not respond quickly enough to the changing demands that our restaurant growth imposes on management, crew and existing infrastructure, and changes to our operating structure may result in increased costs or inefficiencies that we cannot currently anticipate. We have also historically placed a great deal of importance on restaurant cultures, which we believe needs to be redirected to focus more on effective training of our team to deliver excellent customer experiences. As we grow our number of restaurants, additional shifts in our cultural or operational focus may harm morale in our restaurants or prove distracting to our restaurant employees, which could adversely impact our business and operating results.

Risks Related to Operating in the Restaurant Industry

Competition could adversely affect us.

The fast-casual, quick-service and casual dining segments of the restaurant industry are highly competitive with respect to, among other things, taste, price, food quality and presentation, service, location, brand reputation, and the ambience and condition of each restaurant. Our competition includes a variety of restaurants in each of these segments, including locally-owned restaurants and

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