The Wendy's Company
) recently declared its preliminary fourth quarter and full year
2012 results. The company is scheduled to report its detailed
financial results on Feb 28, 2013.
The company posted fourth-quarter 2012 adjusted earnings of 8
cents per share, ahead of the current Zacks Consensus Estimate as
well as the year-ago earnings per share of 4 cents.
Adjusted EBITDA rose 19% to $95.9 million owing to high
restaurant margin and reduced general and administrative
Total revenue in the fourth-quarter climbed 2.4% annually to
$629.9 million, but fell short of the current Zacks Consensus
Estimate of $638.0 million. Wendy's Franchise sales declined 0.8%
to $76 million.
Same-store sales at North America Company-operated restaurants
declined 0.2% versus a rise of 5.1% in the year-earlier quarter.
Wendy's North America Franchise same-store sales also declined
Company-operated restaurant margins in the quarter rose 90
basis points (bps) to 15.9%, driven by increased Image Activation
sales and decreased breakfast advertising expenses, which negated
the adverse impact from commodity cost inflation.
Full Year 2012
In 2012, the company's adjusted earnings per share were 16
cents which was ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 13 cents
and year-ago earnings of 15 cents.
The company's total revenue increased 3% year over year to
nearly $2.51 billion. Wendy's Franchise sales were $307 million,
up 0.7% year over year. North American Company-operated
restaurants' same-store sales and Franchise same-store sales both
increased 1.6% in 2012.
Company-operated restaurant margin remained flat year over
year at 14.0%. Adjusted EBITDA rose 0.7% to $333.3 million in
In fourth quarter, Wendy's declared to repurchase up to $100
million worth of its common stock through December 29, 2013.
During the quarter, the company hiked its cash dividend by
100% to 4 cents per share from 2 cents per share paid previously.
This equates to an annual pay out of 16 cents per share.
Wendy's opened 39 franchised and 12 owned restaurants in the
quarter and shut down 5 company-owned and 29 franchised
restaurants. At the end of the quarter, the company was operating
6,560 restaurants worldwide including 6,186 restaurants in North
Moreover, in 2012 the company purchased 56 franchised
restaurants and sold 30 units to franchisees.
The company projects that its adjusted earnings will be within
18 cents - 20 cents per share in 2013, up 13%-25% year over year.
At present, Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2013 is 17 cents per
share. Management reiterated its adjusted EBITDA guidance of $350
- $360 million for 2013.
The company expects North America company-operated restaurants
same-store sales to increase by 2% - 3%.
Margins at Wendy's are expected to be within 14.2% - 14.5%.
The guidance for margin includes same-store sales as well as
Image Activation growth and favorable cost-effective initiatives,
partially offset by increased commodity costs of 90 - 120 basis
points owing to rising beef costs.
Capital expenditure will likely be about $245 million in 2013.
Wendy's plans to revamp 25 new and 100 existing company-operated
units in North America.
Additionally, the company is planning to spend $10 million to
reimage its restaurants. Wendy's is expecting to reimage nearly
200 restaurants in 2013.
On the expansion front, management plans to open 25 new
restaurants and 40 franchise units. The company is also planning
to unveil nearly 60 franchisee and joint-venture outlets
overseas. The company also plans to close 90 - 100 franchise
restaurants in North America and 15 -20 restaurants overseas.
The company's guidance includes the revamping of 600
restaurants by 2015.
Wendy's is considered as one of the leading quick-service
restaurant companies. It has undertaken a massive remodeling
program and is also investing to improve its breakfast line-up
and drive traffic and sales.
Wendy's faces stiff competition from industry biggies like
Yum! Brands Inc.
) in both domestic and international markets.
Currently, Wendy's retains a Zacks Rank#4 (Sell). We maintain
our long-term 'Neutral' recommendation on the stock.
MCDONALDS CORP (MCD): Free Stock Analysis
WENDYS CO/THE (WEN): Free Stock Analysis
YUM! BRANDS INC (YUM): Free Stock Analysis
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