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 DUBLIN, Ohio, Nov. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Wendy's International (NYSE: WEN) announced all-time record third quarter profits and earnings per share were achieved during the quarter ended Oct. 3.
 James W. Near, Wendy's chairman and CEO, said net income was $24.5 million, up 23 percent over the $19.9 million posted a year ago. Earnings per share were $.23 fully diluted, versus $.19 in 1992. Revenues were a record $339 million and systemwide sales were a record $1.02 billion versus $317 million and $925 million in 1992, respectively.
 "I'm very pleased with another strong quarter," Near said. "Average restaurant sales rose 6.5 c?ent, customer transactions increased 5.2 percent and restaurant operating margins improved significantly to 15.1 percent from 14.0 percent last year. We're doing a better job running our restaurants, and I'm confident we can maintain our strong momentum throughout the final quarter."
 Near added that company restaurants had record sales in every week during the quarter, including the highest weekly sales average in Wendy's history. The company posted its 19th consecutive quarter of year-to-year sales gains.
 The board of directors approved the 62nd consecutive quarterly dividend. Six cents per share will be paid on Nov. 30 to shareholders of record Nov. 15.
 Net income for the first nine months was up 23 percent to $61.7 million, or $.59 per share fully diluted, versus $50 million or $.49 a year ago.
 Revenues were $994 million compared to $933 million last year. Systemwide sales rose to $2.9 billion versus $2.7 billion. All-time sales records were posted for 38 out of the first 39 weeks in the year.
 The 1992 figures include an extra week because of the company's fiscal year accounting policy.
 Near said improved operations, an arsenal of successful new products and outstanding advertising are the driving forces behind the company's success.
 "More people favorably respond to the Dave Thomas advertising campaign than ever before," he said. "Dave's warm and humorous commercials describing Wendy's quality food and everyday low prices are attracting millions of customers into our restaurants. We are very fortunate to have the best advertising along with the best hamburgers in the industry."
 Wendy's opened 54 new company and franchise restaurants during the third quarter and had 164 more restaurants open systemwide than a year ago. At quarter end, there were 4,085 Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers restaurants open and 79 under construction in the U.S. and 32 countries and territories.
 Near said the company's strong performance is continuing into the fourth quarter. Sales in October followed the very positive trends throughout the year.
 -- Wendy's will be advertising on national television for the entire quarter for the first time ever.
 -- Food costs are favorable, with some key products below last year.
 -- Sales for new restaurants continue to exceed company averages and about 90 restaurants are projected to open in the fourth quarter.
 -- The board of directors approved the early redemption of about $30 million of 7 1/4 percent convertible subordinated debentures, due Dec. 1, 2010. The redemption price will be 101.45 percent of the principal amount plus accrued interest. The debentures are convertible into Wendy's common shares until the close of business on the redemption date (which will be on or before Jan. 31, 1994) at the current conversion rate of $17.44 per share. Formal notice will be sent to registered holders of the debentures at least 20 days before the redemption date. The redemption will be funded from cash on hand.
 -- On a financial reporting and administrative basis, the Canadian operations will be restructured to become the company's sixth operating region. This will produce administrative and overall efficiencies. The net effect of this legal entity restructuring will be a reduction of the income tax rate for 1993. The company expects the tax rate in 1994 to be about 36 percent.
 The financial benefit will be offset by asset write-offs related to the closure of selected underperforming restaurants, write-offs in connection with restaurant equipment upgrades and additional insurance liability reserves. The company anticipates these strategic initiatives will strengthen the company's future performance.
 (In thousands except per share data)
 Quarters Ended Year-to-Date Ended
 10/3/93 10/4/92 10/3/93 10/4/92
 (13 Wks.) (13 Wks.) (39 Wks.) (40 Wks.)
 Retail sales $306,522 $285,520 $900,654 $845,871
 Royalties 28,522 24,719 78,795 72,310
 Other 3,846 7,043 14,972 14,476
 Total 338,890 317,282 994,421 932,657
 Costs & expenses:
 Cost of sales 178,798 168,564 530,115 497,976
 Company restaurant
 operating costs 81,555 76,975 241,374 232,266
 General and admini-
 strative expenses 21,401 22,040 68,471 68,911
 Depreciation and
 amortization of
 property and
 equipment 16,071 15,459 49,088 45,582
 Interest, net 2,810 3,139 9,006 9,724
 Total 300,635 286,177 898,054 854,459
 Income before income
 taxes and extra-
 ordinary loss 38,255 31,105 96,367 78,198
 Income taxes 13,771 11,195 34,692 28,152
 Income before
 extraordinary loss 24,484 19,910 61,675 50,046
 Extraordinary loss
 on early extinguish-
 ment of debt (net
 of income tax
 benefit of $9) -- -- -- (14)
 Net income $ 24,484 $ 19,910 $ 61,675 $ 50,032
 Per share data:
 Primary net income $.24 $.20 $.60 $.49
 Fully diluted
 net income $.23 $.19 $.59 $.49
 Dividends $.06 $.06 $.18 $.18
 Primary shares 102,905 101,315 102,567 101,177
 Systemwide sales $1,022 M $ 925 M $2,909 M $2,712 M
 Average comparable
 net sales per
 domestic restaurant:
 Company $252,750 $237,350 $733,500 $693,300
 Franchise 249,450 235,100 720,150 678,200
 Total domestic 250,450 235,800 724,250 682,850
 Number of restaurants:
 Company 1,198 1,191 1,198 1,191
 Franchise 2,887 2,730 2,887 2,730
 Total 4,085 3,921 4,085 3,921
 -0- 11/4/93
 /CONTACT: Denny Lynch, VP Communications, of Wendy's International, 614-764-3413/

CO: Wendy's International, Inc. ST: Ohio IN: LEI SU: ERN

AR -- CL014 -- 0683 11/04/93 11:39 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 4, 1993

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