Wendy's Raises Sales Growth, EPS Guidance as Fiscal First-Quarter Results Surge Ahead of Views
08:38 AM EDT, 05/12/2021 (MT Newswires) -- Wendy's (WEN) on Wednesday increased its outlook for full-year sales growth and earnings after the restaurant operator's results in the fiscal first quarter beat Wall Street's expectations amid the reopening of the US economy from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Revenue for the Dublin, Ohio-based company rose 14% year-on-year to $460.2 million in the three months through April 4, ahead of the consensus on Capital IQ for $445.3 million. Adjusted earnings climbed to $0.20 a share from $0.09 a year before, also topping the Street's view, which was for $0.15 a share.
"The robust growth in our business continued in the first quarter of 2021 as sales significantly exceeded our expectations and fueled our restaurant economic model, leading to outsized profits," Chief Executive Todd Penegor said in a statement.
In the first quarter, Wendy's saw systemwide sales growth of more than 12% across the company after an increase of just 1% a year earlier, when restrictions around the world to stem the spread of the respiratory disease began to be implemented. Same-restaurant sales jumped 13% globally, including almost 14% in the US. A year earlier, same-restaurant sales dropped 0.2% globally and were flat in the US.
For the full year, the fast-food chain is expecting global systemwide sales growth of 8% to 10%, up from a previous view for 6% to 8%, along with adjusted EPS between $0.72 and $0.74, higher than the earlier projection of $0.67 to $0.69. The Street is looking for $0.69 in normalized EPS.
"We are increasing our 2021 financial outlook meaningfully across all key financial metrics, driven by an outstanding first quarter that underscores our continued momentum and the overall strength of our business," Penegor said.
Wendy's boosted its quarterly dividend by 11% to $0.10 a share, payable on June 15 to investors on record by June 1. It's also increasing a share repurchase authorization by $50 million to $150 million after buying back $56 million in the first quarter amid "favorable market conditions," the company said.
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