Wetzel's Pretzels announced highlights and financial results for its fiscal year 2016 along with its outlook for fiscal year 2017. With more than 300 locations now open, the company's recent addition of various multi-unit franchise partners ensures a robust 2017 expansion, with store count expected to surpass 320 by the end of the year.
Achieved comparable same-store sales increases of 4.4 percent
Q4 marked the 12th straight consecutive quarter of same-store sales growth
Continued non-traditional unit growth, including the opening of Wetzel's locations at multiple Walmart locations and in Manhattan's Fulton Center, with daily foot traffic exceeding 300,000
Opened 23 units, including the company's first Saudi Arabia location
Launched user-friendly app for iOS and Android, which led the snack category in its transparent and generous loyalty program. App allowed for both mobile pay and e-gift cards.
Continued traditional and nontraditional growth, including expansion within multiple Walmart locations
Recruiting Multi-Unit Developers to expand into strategic areas of the country where significant white space for store growth remains
Launch of new Bitz flavor, on the heels of Pizza Bitz, one of the most successful new product introductions in company history, which accounted for up to 10 percent of net sales system-wide
Traffic-driving rewards delivered via the Wetzel's Pretzel app
Additional expansion in Saudi Arabia
"While the restaurant sector was essentially flat in 2016, Wetzel's continued to drive same-store sales increases," says Bill Phelps, co-founder and CEO of Wetzel's Pretzels. "We attribute this growth to a variety of factors, including offering the best-tasting, freshest product, exceptional customer service and a corporate philosophy that places a priority on franchise profitability. Asked to comment on future growth plans, Phelps says, "There is tremendous white space for Wetzel's Pretzels both domestically—in malls, bus stations, Walmarts, stadiums and airports —and internationally. With our strong unit economics and same-store sales growth, we expect to capitalize on those opportunities by recruiting more multi-unit developers into our system and offering incentives for growth."