Industry News | November 1, 2001

Wendy's Management Announces 3Q Results, Says "Optimistic" for 2002

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Wendy's International, Inc., announced financial results for the third quarter. Management also updated sales results for October, discussed plans for 2002, and announced a new member of its board of directors.

For the third quarter, which ended on September 30, 2001, systemwide sales grew 7 percent to a record $2.2 billion. Total revenues increased 5.7 percent to a record $610 million. The company and its franchisees opened 116 new restaurants in the quarter, including 74 Wendy's and 42 Tim Hortons.

Wendy's says it is on track to meet its target of at least 515 new restaurant openings in 2001.

Same-store sales grew 1.6 percent at Wendy's U.S. company restaurants, on top of a 2.8-percent increase during the same period in 2000. Same-store sales at Tim Hortons restaurants in Canada grew 6.4 percent on top of an 8.9 percent increase a year ago, while Tim Hortons restaurants in the U.S. grew 6.5 percent, versus 11.8 percent a year ago.

General and administrative expenses were $54.6 million, up 3.1 percent compared to a year ago.

Wendy's domestic company operating margin was 15.1 percent, compared to 16.8 percent a year ago. Pretax income was $83.1 million, up 6.8 percent compared to a year ago.

As announced on October 8, 2001, Wendy's net income for the quarter was $52.4 million, up 7.7 percent compared to a year ago. Diluted earnings per share were $0.44, a 7.3-percent increase over $0.41 per share a year ago. The company purchased 440,000 shares of Wendy's common stock during the quarter for $12.0 million.

Chairman and CEO Jack Schuessler said, "We delivered a good quarter in a tough economic environment. Our performance continues to be driven by new restaurant openings, sales growth at Wendy's and Tim Hortons, and outstanding restaurant-level operations by our company employees and franchisees. We also controlled costs very effectively at the corporate and store level. Factors that pressured earnings in the quarter included the slowing economy, higher beef costs, and negative foreign currency translation." "Looking ahead," said Scheussler, "we will continue to grow our core Wendy's and Tim Hortons brands, and invest in technology to improve our business. In addition, we have the capacity to make strategic investments and will continue to pursue opportunities with a very disciplined approach."

Wendy's continues to focus on its long-term strategy of operational excellence in its restaurants. The company and its franchisees report they are making progress with Service Excellence initiatives.

The company reports it has solid plans in place at Wendy's for 2002. The system of nearly 6,000 company and franchised Wendy's stores will continue to focus on Service Excellence, the Late Night program, quality products, and balanced marketing, Scheussler said.

At Tim Hortons, the chain has a number of programs in place to improve operations and speed of service for customers. Tim Hortons' 2002 marketing calendar includes a number of product promotions as well as the popular "Roll Up the Rim to Win" campaign.

The Board of Directors approved a quarterly dividend of 6 cents per share, payable on November 27 to shareholders of record as of November 12. It will be the Company's 95th consecutive dividend payment to shareholders.