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Darden Restaurants tops earnings, revenue estimates

An Olive Garden restaurant in New York.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
An Olive Garden restaurant in New York.

Darden Restaurants reported quarterly earnings and revenue that slightly beat analysts' expectations on Tuesday. The company's largest unit, Olive Garden, topped same-restaurant sales estimates, and the company raised the low end of its previous guidance.

After the earnings announcement, the company's shares rose 2 percent in extended-hours trading.

The company posted fiscal second-quarter earnings of 28 cents per share, excluding items, up from 12 cents a share in the year-earlier period.

Revenue increased to $1.56 billion from $1.49 billion a year ago.

Olive Garden same-store sales were expected to fall 0.5 percent, according to a consensus estimate from Consensus Metrix. Instead, they turned positive and rose 0.5 percent after accelerating in November.

It expects adjusted diluted net earnings per share to be between $2.25 to $2.30 for fiscal year 2015. This is higher than the estimate of $2.26 a share from Thomson Reuters' consensus estimate and is higher than the company's earlier projection during its last earnings report of $2.22 to $2.30.

Earlier this year, the company spun off its Red Lobster unit as it focuses more on its Olive Garden business.