UPDATE 1-Landry's posts Q4 loss

Thu Mar 11, 2010 9:07am EST

* Q4 loss/shr $2.20 vs. EPS $0.28 yr-ago

* Says plans to conserve capital for debt repayment

* Q4 interest expense more than doubles

March 11 (Reuters) - Landry's Restaurants Inc LNY.N reported a quarterly loss, hurt by higher interest expense, and the seafood restaurant operator said it plans to reduce its unit growth and conserve capital for debt repayment.

Landry's, which operates the iconic Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas and several casual dining outlets including Landry's Seafood House, said its interest expense more than doubled to $67.8 million in the fourth quarter.

For the quarter, Landry's reported a net loss from continuing operations of $32.3 million, or $2.20 a share, compared with a profit of $4.8 million, or 28 cents a share, a year ago.

Revenue fell 3 percent to $245.3 million. Same-store sales fell 5 percent at the company's restaurants segment and 8 percent at its gaming operations.

Shares of the Houston-based company closed at $20.82 Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Renju Jose in Bangalore; Editing by Unnikrishnan Nair)