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A&W BRANDS ANNOUNCES A STOCK SPLIT AND A STOCK REPURCHASE PROGRAM AND COMMENTS ON FOURTH QUARTER RESULTS

 WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Jan. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- M.L. Lowenkron, chairman and chief executive officer of A&W Brands, Inc. (NASDAQ: SODA) today announced that the board of directors of the company approved a 3-for-2 stock split on the shares of common stock of the company, par value $.01 per share, payable on or about Feb. 16, 1993, by way of a stock dividend to holders of record on Feb. 1,
1993. Pre-split, there are currently


9,386,580 shares outstanding.
 Mr. Lowenkron also announced today that the board of directors of the company has authorized a stock repurchase program pursuant to which the company may repurchase at then prevailing market prices up to 750,000 shares of its common stock computed after the 3-for-2 stock split, which corresponds to 500,000 shares pre-split. In announcing the program, Mr. Lowenkron stated that based on current market prices, the board had determined that such a program would represent a positive use of the company's funds. The repurchases are expected to take place over an extended period of time, with purchases being made in the open market or through privately negotiated transactions. In making the repurchases the company expects to use only cash available from time to time and no borrowing of funds by the company is anticipated in connection with the program. The repurchase is subject to postponement or termination at any time in light of prevailing market conditions or better use of available cash.
 Based on preliminary fourth quarter information, Lowenkron reported that the company's core brands unit sales increased 2 percent in the quarter and, in combination with the new Tetley and Everlast products, total domestic volume showed a 4 percent increase. However, the higher than anticipated cost of marketing and distributing the new Tetley and Everlast products will result in net earnings of approximately $.49 per share in the fourth quarter, versus $.48 per share in the prior comparable 1991 period. Lowenkron indicated that the investment in these new products lowered earnings an estimated $.03 per share in the fourth quarter.
 The preliminary fourth quarter results would bring total year earnings to $1.67 per share versus $1.53 per share for 1991, a 9 percent increase.
 The company is very pleased with the rebound of its core business in the fourth quarter, Lowenkron continued and he is confident that the company's marketing investment in Tetley and Everlast will result in much improved 1993 volume results for these brands. As a debt free company, A&W Brands, Inc. is in a position to invest in building its volume for long-term benefits. While this can impact short-term profitability, it provides the company with the basis for long-term growth opportunities.
 A&W Brands, Inc., based in White Plains, N.Y., is a leading marketer of soft drinks in niche flavor segments.
 -0- 1/7/93
 /CONTACT: Ernest J. Cavallo of A&W Brands, Inc., 914-397-1700/
 (SODA)


CO: A&W Brands, Inc. ST: New York IN: FOD SU:

WB -- NY097 -- 2813 01/07/93 16:44 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 7, 1993
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