Wingstop Restaurants Inc.WING recently announced that its international restaurant count exceeded 100 in December.
The 100 th location was opened in Reynosa, Mexico. The restaurant opening marked the country's 60 th location. Notably, Mexico is the company's first and the longest running international market that has helped it gain global traction.
The company, which is known for its global expansion strategies, has established more than 1,000 locations worldwide, including the United States, Mexico, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia.
We note that shares of Wingstop have rallied 40% in the past year, outperforming the industry 's gain of 20.8%.
Expansion to to Boost Traffic & Sales
The 100 th location adds to Wingstop's rapidly growing brand portfolio. Expansion and brand building seem to be the company's primary strategies to drive growth. We believe that continual international development will strengthen Wingstop's global brand presence that would eventually pave way for long-term growth.
In the third quarter of 2017, the company announced 32 net restaurant openings, of which five were in international markets. In the said quarter, Wingstop forayed into Saudi Arabia which reached the company's restaurants count to 94 in seven countries outside the United States.
The company also signed two international development agreements for 110 restaurants across Australia and New Zealand over the next 10 years and more than 70 restaurants in France over the next 12 years. Continual global expansion is part of the company's broader goal to achieve a position among the top ten global restaurant brands.
Cash Generation to Enhance Shareholders' Value
Wingstop's relentless global expansion is made possible by its franchisee business model that strengthens brand recognition and helps the company drive free cash flow.
Solid cash balance gives management the flexibility to pursue opportunities in different markets as well as increase dividend payout. These are expected to continue enhancing Wingstops' shareholders' value.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Wingstop has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
A few better-ranked stocks in the U.S. restaurant space are Famous Dave's of America, Inc. DAVE , Good Times Restaurants, Inc. GTIM and McDonald's Corporation MCD . While Dave's of America sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Good Times and McDonald's carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .
Dave's of America, McDonald's and Good Times' long-term EPS growth is projected at 20%, 9.4% and 25%, respectively.
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