Tim Hortons net rises 17% despite challenges in U.S.

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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OAKVILLE, ONT. — Tim Hortons Inc. posted net income of C$78,757,000 ($67,428,000), equal to C$0.43 per share on the common stock, in the third quarter ended Sept. 28, up 17% from C$67,381,000, or C$0.36 per share, in the previous year’s third quarter. Net sales rose 4% to C$508,995,000 ($435,828,000). Same-store sales grew 3.8% in Canada but fell 0.6% in the United States.

"Our earnings performance and positive same-store sales growth in Canada demonstrates our brand strength in the face of unprecedented economic and consumer challenges," said Don Schroeder, president and chief executive officer. "While our brand in the U.S. is less developed and we faced sales and earnings challenges due in large part to the current economic conditions, we delivered strong consolidated performance in the third quarter."

During the third quarter, Tim Hortons opened 49 restaurants, which compared with 40 opened during the third quarter a year earlier.

Tim Hortons said its U.S. business sustained a loss of C$2,119,000 ($1,810,000) in the third quarter, which compared with a loss of C$288,000 in the same period a year earlier.

A total of 19 restaurants were opened in the United States during the quarter, bringing the year-to-date total in the United States to 30.

Based on year-to-date same-store sales performance of 1.2% and continued economic weakness in the United States, Tim Hortons said it does not expect to meet its 2008 same-store sales target in the United States of 2% to 4% growth. The company also said it does not expect to exceed the restaurant expansion target of 90 to 110 locations.

For the nine months ended Sept. 28, net income totaled C$215,551,000 ($183,894,000), or C$1.17 per share, up from C$193,881,000, or C$1.03 per share. Sales rose 7% to C$1,480,004,000 ($1,262,339,000).

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