Jun. 3, 2014, 8:58 AM
- The city council in Seattle approves an increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour.
- Mayor Ed Murray is expected to sign the measure into law today.
- The pay floor will be implemented over several years with the specific time-frame depending upon the size of a business.
- Fast-food restaurant chains (MCD, BKW, WEN, JACK, YUM, SONC, PLKI) are expected to feel the biggest pinch from higher minimum wage levels.
May. 29, 2014, 10:21 AM
- Shares of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen (PLKI +10.7%) shoot higher after the company beats estimates with its FQ1 report.
- The company showed stronger sales trends than rivals with a 4.5% rise in global comparable-store sales. By comparison, the KFC division of Yum Brands (YUM +0.1%) showed a 4% drop in comp sales in the U.S. during its last quarter.
- Popeye's improved its market share of the domestic chicken-QSR segment by 210 bps to 22.3% over the last year.
May. 20, 2014, 5:51 PM
- Brian Niccol, currently the head of Taco Bell U.S., has been tapped by YUM to be the Mexican fast-food chain's new CEO in January. He'll replace Greg Creed, who's set to take over as Yum's CEO at that time.
- Taco Bell has been a laggard for Yum amid tough competition from more upscale chains such as Chipotle. System sales were flat Y/Y in the March quarter, and same-store sales down 1%.
May. 13, 2014, 10:20 AM
- NPC International thinks Pizza Hut (YUM) has fallen behind its rivals in digital platforms.
- The large franchisee cited the digital shortfall by the chain as it reported its own earnings earlier this week.
- Restaurants analysts have noted in the past that Domino's has picked up pizza market share as a result of its robust mobile app.
May. 2, 2014, 10:37 AM
- Taco Bell (YUM) has launched a third round of TV advertisements to promote the chain's new breakfast menu.
- The recent media blitz has been the largest in Taco Bell's history and comes amid recent promotions from Starbucks and McDonald's aimed at diverting consumer attention.
- The new round of ads are clearly aimed at younger audience (watch on YouTube) as the waffle taco breakfast is linked to raves and twerking.
- What to watch: Some restaurant sector analysts note the aggressive spend by Taco Bell could be felt in Q2 results for Yum Brands.
May. 2, 2014, 9:28 AM
- A report from Technomic indicates the fast-casual segment of the restaurant industry increased sales by 11% and unit count by 8% last year to easily outdistance the average growth in the sector.
- Panera (PNRA), Chipotle (CMG), and Panda Express (private) all generated double-digit sales growth during the period.
- The trend hasn't gone unnoticed by fast-food operators. Taco Bell (YUM) plans to launch two new concepts - U.S. Taco and Urban Taproom - in California, while KFC (YUM) is experimenting with KFC Eleven. Red Lobster (DRI) is also active in testing the segment with its Seaside Express concept.
May. 1, 2014, 3:36 PM
May. 1, 2014, 9:11 AM
Apr. 22, 2014, 5:29 PM
- YUM's worldwide system sales rose 4% Y/Y in Q1 vs. 5% in Q4. Restaurant margin rose 330 bps Y/Y to 19.2%.
- The China division continued to rebound from last year's avian flu-related woes: Same-store sales rose 9% Y/Y (11% at KFC), and system sales 20%. The division's restaurant margin rose 680 bps to 23.4%.
- KFC division system sales +4%, same-store +1%. Pizza Hut system sales flat same-store -2%, Taco Bell system sales flat, same-store -1%, India division +21%, with 25% unit growth offsetting a 1% same-store decline.
- $170M has been spent on buybacks YTD. Food and paper costs equaled 26.6% of revenue vs. 26.8% a year ago.
- Yum plans to open at least 700 new Chinese restaurants this year, and 1,250 in other international markets. The company still expects at least 20% 2014 EPS growth.
- Q1 results, PR
Apr. 22, 2014, 5:15 PM
Apr. 22, 2014, 12:10 AM
Apr. 21, 2014, 5:35 PM
Apr. 21, 2014, 7:46 AM| Comment!
Apr. 16, 2014, 8:18 AM
- A strong month for retail sales in China could bode well for U.S. companies relying on a vibrant consumer in the region. March's pace of 12.2% growth beat estimates.
- During Q1, China's retail sales increased 12% Y/Y to 6.21T yuan ($1.01T).
- A cross-section of some firms looking at China for growth includes Yum Brands (YUM), Whirlpool (WHR), Avon Products (AVP), Ford (F), Ralph Lauren (RL), and Procter & Gamble (PG).
Apr. 8, 2014, 8:00 AM
- Execs with Taco Bell (YUM) say the company is on to phase two with a marketing campaign designed to promote its new breakfast menu.
- The next round of TV commercial will position the food chain as the "next generation" for breakfast after the first spots took dead aim at McDonald's.
- The company says response for its A.M. Crunchwrap, Waffle Taco, and Cinnabon Delights items has been strong. New breakfast products still to debut at Taco Bell include yoguer parfait, oatmeal, and premium coffee drinks.
- Fast-food breakfast war timeline
Apr. 7, 2014, 9:22 AM
- A Yum Brands (YUM) store in Arlington, Texas appears to be test run at creating a concept that could challenge Chick-fil-A.
- The store has no KFC branding and features a limited menu built around a "hand-breaded" chicken sandwich.
- Restaurant industry insiders note that a highly concentrated menu such as seen with Chick-fil-A or In-N-Out Burger can create a powerful brand reputation with consumers if done right.
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