Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc. (Nasdaq: CHKR) reported today that diluted earnings per share for first quarter 2003 increased 19% to $0.25 on an increase of 6.6% in revenues.

As with others in the quick-serve segment, Checkers’ same store sales decreased, down 1.1%.

Peter O’Hara, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer commented, “We were pleased to report strong first quarter results during a three month period characterized by economic softness, poor weather conditions in many of our markets, and geopolitical uncertainty. Our success was a direct result of an experienced management team, strong corporate owned same store sales, and solid progress with our franchisees.”

The company opened 2 restaurants in the first quarter and expects to open another 9 to 13 in the remainder of the year.

On another front, CEO and President Daniel J. Dorsch resigned his post effective immediately “to pursue other personal and professional activities.” Chairman Peter O’Hara will assume the role of CEO until an interim CEO is named.

Mr. Dorsch stated, “With a three-year turnaround plan nearing completion, I believe that Checkers Drive-In has emerged as a leader in the QSR category. Not only is the balance sheet improved, but our adjusted earnings growth has been significant. As I leave the Company to spend more time with my family and pursue other professional interests, I am fully aware that the passion and dedication of our entire team made the difference.”

O’Hara said a national search firm has been hired to find a permanent CEO.

News, Checkers