NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Fast-food chain operator Wendy's International reported a 10 percent per share profit increase in its second quarter Tuesday, beating Wall Street estimates by a penny.|
For the quarter ended July 2, the Dublin, Ohio-based operator of Wendy's and Tim Horton's restaurants posted net income of $50.7 million, or 43 cents a diluted share, compared with $49.5 million, or 39 cents a diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Analysts polled by First Call/Thomson Financial had expected earnings of 42 cents a share.
The diluted earnings per share figure includes 2 cents a share in asset gains in the quarter, the company said.
Revenue for the quarter rose to $570 million from $529 million.
Shares of Wendy's International (WEN: Research, Estimates) gained 1-15/16 to 18-7/8 immediately following the announcement Tuesday.
"The company continues to deliver quality earnings growth above our stated goals," President and CEO Jack Schuessler said.
U.S. same-store sales, a closely watched measure of sales at stores open at least a year, grew 2.8 percent for the second quarter compared with 8.3 percent a year ago, and are up 3.2 percent for the first half, officials said.
Tom Mueller, president and chief operating officer of Wendy's North America, called the numbers impressive considering the year-ago sales growth, but attributed the slowdown to pressure from competitors that have discounted sandwich prices.
Tim Hortons gains continue
Same-store sales at Tim Hortons, the company's Canadian-based chain, grew 8.7 percent in the quarter compared with a 10.9 percent increase a year ago.
In addition, Wendy's International said it is on track to open 520 new Wendys and Tim Hortons restaurants system-wide by the end of 2000.
The company bought back 680,300 common shares for $13.4 million in the quarter, bringing the total repurchase to 21.5 million shares for $485 million.