Cold weather may have dampened Sonic Corp.’s third-quarter same-store sales, but officials for the Oklahoma City-based drive-in chain said Sonic’s performance would heat up the rest of the year as new culinary, marketing and technology initiatives take hold.
Chief executive Clifford Hudson noted during the company’s third-quarter earnings call that harsher winter weather compared with last year’s third quarter negatively affected same-store sales between 3 percent and 4 percent, particularly in March. But as the weather warmed up in April and especially May, Sonic’s same-store sales accelerated.
"Looking into May was particularly noteworthy because May 2012 was our highest comp month of fiscal 2012," Hudson said. "To have our business move positively in such a positive comp manner in the strongest month of the quarter made us feel very good about the underlying results and the strength of our business and our strategies."
For the May 31-ended third period, Sonic’s net income increased 2.8 percent to $14.8 million, or 26 cents per share, compared with $14.4 million, or 24 cents per share, a year earlier.
Third-quarter revenue declined 1.9 percent to $146.6 million, reflecting a systemwide same-store sales gain of 0.1 percent and a reduction in lease income. Same-store sales increased 0.2 percent at franchised locations during the quarter, offset by a 1.1-percent decrease at company-owned drive-ins.