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Ruby Tuesday, Inc. Estimates Second Quarter Same-Store Sales Up 1.9%


MARYVILLE, Tenn., Dec. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Ruby Tuesday, Inc. (NYSE: RI), one of America's leading companies in the fast-growing casual dining segment, today revised its prior estimate of same-store sales increase for the quarter ended December 4, 2001 to positive 1.9%, up from flat to positive 1.0%, at Company-owned Ruby Tuesday(R) restaurants.

"We are pleased with our same-store sales performance for the quarter," said Sandy Beall, Chairman and CEO. "With the aftermath of September 11th, we were expecting Company-owned same-store sales growth in the flat to up one percent range. As of our first quarter release on October 3rd, second quarter same-store sales were reported as being down 0.3% to date. However, sales momentum that returned in late September continued through the balance of the quarter, which led to the revised estimate of 1.9% same-store sales growth for the quarter."

System-wide same-store sales increase is estimated to be 1.2% for the quarter. Same-store sales at domestic franchise Ruby Tuesday restaurants, which were negatively affected by reduced tourism due to the number of restaurants in Florida, are estimated to decrease 1.0%. Excluding the impact of the Company's four franchise partners in Florida, same-store sales at domestic franchise Ruby Tuesday restaurants is estimated to increase 0.3% for the quarter.

As stated, Company performance continued throughout the quarter with October same-store sales increasing 3.2% and November same-store sales increasing an estimated 2.3%. For the quarter, mall units same-store sales are estimated to decrease 0.3% after being down 2.1% quarter-to-date as of the October 3, 2001, release. The same-store sales increase at freestanding units is estimated to be 3.6% for the quarter without any media advertising. Beall continued, "we have performed well and feel good about our position despite the events of September 11th and the sluggish economy. We continue to believe that casual dining and in particular the bar and grill segment of casual dining is an extremely attractive industry segment."

The Company will release second quarter fiscal 2002 results on January 10, 2002 and will hold a conference call that afternoon.

    For more information, contact:     Phone:  865-379-5700
    Price Cooper
    Vice President, Investor Relations and Planning

    Special Note Regarding Forward-Looking Information

This press release contains various "forward-looking statements" which represent the Company's expectations or beliefs concerning future events, including the following: future financial performance and unit growth (both Company-owned and franchised), future capital expenditures, future borrowings and repayment of debt, and payment of dividends. The Company cautions that a number of important factors could, individually or in the aggregate, cause actual results to differ materially from those included in the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, the following: consumer spending trends and habits; mall-traffic trends; increased competition in the casual dining restaurant market; weather conditions in the regions in which Company- owned and franchised restaurants are operated; consumers' acceptance of the Company's development concepts; laws and regulations affecting labor and employee benefit costs; costs and availability of food and beverage inventory; the Company's ability to attract qualified managers and franchisees; changes in the availability of capital; and general economic conditions.


SOURCE Ruby Tuesday, Inc.
CONTACT: Price Cooper, Vice President, Investor Relations and Planning of Ruby Tuesday, Inc., +1-865-379-5700