Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc. (BWLD)

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Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD)

Q3 2009 Earnings Call

October 27, 2009 5:00 pm ET


Mary J. Twinem - Chief Financial Officer, Executive Vice President, Treasurer

Sally J. Smith - President, Chief Executive Officer, Director


Jeff Farmer - Jefferies & Company

David Tarantino - Robert W. Baird

Analyst for Matt DiFrisco - Oppenheimer

Larry Miller - RBC Capital Markets

Bryan Elliott - Raymond James

Dustin Tompkins - Morgan Keegan

Paul Westra - Cowen & Company

Nicole Miller - Piper Jaffray

John Glass - Morgan Stanley

Brad Luddington - Keybanc Capital Markets

Greg McKinley - Dougherty & Company

Joe Fischer - Goldman Sachs

Greg Schroeder - Jesup & Lamont Securities

Stephen Anderson - MKM Partners



Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to the Buffalo Wild Wings third quarter 2009 conference call. (Operator Instructions) I will now turn the conference over to Mary Twinem, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Buffalo Wild Wings. Please go ahead.

Mary J. Twinem

Good afternoon and thank you for joining us as we review our third quarter 2009 results. I am Mary Twinem, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Buffalo Wild Wings. Joining me today is Sally Smith, our President and Chief Executive Officer.

By now, everyone should have access to our third quarter earnings release, which went out after the market closed today. If you have not received the release, it is available on the investor relations section of our website at A script of our prepared remarks will also be posted on our website after the call.

Before we get started, I want to remind you that during the course of today’s call, various remarks we make about future expectations, plans, and prospects for the company constitute forward-looking statements for purposes of the Safe Harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may vary materially from those contained in forward-looking statements based on a number of factors, including without limitation our ability to achieve and manage our planned expansions, the number of locations opening during the remainder of 2009, during 2010, and beyond, the sales at these and our other company-owned and franchised locations, our ability to successfully operate in new markets, unforeseen obstacles in developing sites, the costs of commodities, such as chicken wings, the success of our marketing initiative, our ability to control restaurant labor and other restaurant operating costs, economic conditions, including changes in consumer preferences or consumer discretionary spending, and other factors disclosed from time to time in our filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

On today’s call, Sally will provide an overview of the third quarter. After that, I will provide further detail on our recent financial performance and comment on trends in the fourth quarter. Finally, Sally will share some thoughts about the remainder of 2009, as well as thoughts on next year. We will then answer questions.

So with that, I will turn things over to Sally.

Sally J. Smith

Good afternoon, everyone. Buffalo Wild Wings continues to deliver category-leading operational and financial performance as demonstrated by our outstanding third quarter results. Our revenue growth of 25% produced impressive net earnings growth of 50% over last year, achieving earnings per diluted share of $0.38. Even as the challenging economic backdrop continues to impact the lives of our guests, our results demonstrate we are providing them our compelling You Have to Be Here dining experience that brings them back.

Thank you to the entire Buffalo Wild Wings Team for their continued dedication to improvement which delivered these great results.

With our third quarter results, we are confident we will achieve our growth goals for 2009. We opened three new markets during the quarter: El Paso, Texas, Pensacola, Florida and Honolulu, Hawaii, which gives us a presence in 41 states. Our expansion continues in Southern California with 12 locations to date, and one more scheduled to open by the end of the year.

The strong sales performance of our new units is thanks to the tireless efforts of our development and new restaurant opening teams, who raised the bar even higher with a new opening week sales record at our franchised location in El Paso, Texas. In August, we also opened our first airport location in Houston Hobby, and we expect to open our second airport location in JFK’s International terminal by the end of the year.

Our third quarter same-store sales increased 0.8% at company-owned locations and 1.9% at franchised locations compared to last year, and though the late start of the NFL and college seasons negatively impacted our third quarter sales, our football season is off to a strong start with more marketing, advertising and operational programs in place than ever before.

And with thanks to our Las Vegas team members, we’re pleased to share that starting in September the Las Vegas market now has positive same-store sales, which is ahead of our goal of positive trends by year-end.

Our layered marketing strategy reinforces that we are the destination for football, and helps build momentum throughout the season that will carry on into 2010. We enhanced our fantasy football draft promotion with an interactive online component, and we launched a new PR campaign that enlisted ESPN football expert Trey Wingo and an All-Star list of fantasy football bloggers that will extend throughout the season.

In addition to our fantasy programs, we have an exclusive Football Challenge promotion that gives our guests and our team members a once-in-a-lifetime chance to play a game in Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida and meet former pro football players. And we have a greater TV presence during NFL and college football games.

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