Tim Hortons net income slightly higher in 2009

by Josh Sosland
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OAKVILLE, ONTARIO — Net income of Tim Hortons Inc. in the year ended Jan. 3 was C$297,878,000 ($282.4 million), equal to C$1.64 ($1.55) per share on the common stock, up 4% from C$286,894,000, or C$1.55 per share, in 2008. Sales were C$2,242,138,000 ($2,126 million), up 10%.

Operating income in 2009 was C$495.4 million, up 11% from 2008. Excluding the impact of a public company reorganization and 2008 asset impairment charges, operating income was up 8%.

In the United States, same-store sales were up 3.2% in 2009, which the company said eclipsed its target of growth between 0% and 2%. During the year 45 sites were opened, more than the company’s projected range of 30 to 40 restaurant locations.

Operating income for the year was C$4.8 million in the United States, again beating the company’s target of a break even year for segment operating income.

“Our focus on being relevant to our customers and responding to their needs continues to position Tim Hortons among the leaders in the North American restaurant sector,” said Don Schroeder, president and chief executive officer. “Our record revenue and earnings performance in 2009 once again demonstrated the resiliency of our brand in difficult economic circumstances and we were pleased with the ability of our system to continue to successfully grow in challenging times.”

Same store sales in Canada in 2009 were up 2.9%, shy of the targeted range of 3% to 5%. Openings in 2009 totaled 131 restaurants, within the mid-range of the company’s 120 to 140 target. Operating income of $534.1 million was up 5% from 2008.

In the fourth quarter, net income was C$90,989,000 ($86.3 million), equal to C$0.51 (48c) per share, up 33% from C$69,127,000, or C$0.38, in the fourth quarter last year. Sales were C$615,314,000 ($583 million), up 9%. Operating income was up 28% in the fourth quarter, but excluding a C$21.3 million charge in the same period in 2008, operating income was up slightly in the quarter.

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