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Sonic's strong financial results recently released for fiscal year 1999 are key to this important ranking. Sonic's five-year average return on equity is 17 percent, and 19 percent for the latest 12 months. Sales in the latest 12 months reached $249 million and net income for the same period hit $25.5 million. Sonic opened 176 new drive-ins in 1999, surpassing its previous record of 170 set in 1998.
"Because the Forbes 200 ranking emphasizes consistent, long-term growth, it is an especially gratifying distinction that speaks to the increasing strength of the Sonic brand and our successful multi-layered growth," said Clifford Hudson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sonic Corp.
"With the recent report of another record year for Sonic in fiscal 1999, Sonic is well-positioned to extend its record of growth in the coming year and hopefully continue its rise in the Forbes ranking."
The Forbes announcement comes on the heels of another recognition in the restaurant industry. QSR magazine recently named Sonic on several of its "America's Hottest Restaurant Chains" lists.
Sonic is known for its cooked-to-order food served by carhops who deliver food directly to customers' cars. With more than 2,000 drive-ins in 27 states, Sonic is the nation's largest chain of drive-in restaurants. More than three-quarters of a million people eat at Sonic Drive-Ins every day.
The company's common stock is traded through the Nasdaq National Market System under the symbol SONC.