Shares of the company were up 3 percent at $68.40 before the
bell on Wednesday.
Sales rose 8 percent at Taco Bell restaurants open for more than
a year, topping the 3.7 percent growth expected by analysts
polled by research firm Consensus Metrix.
Taco Bell performed well in the quarter by avoiding over
discounting and through the successful launch of the Naked
Chicken Chalupa, a taco with a shell made of chicken,
Morningstar analysts wrote in a pre-earnings note.
While KFC's same-store sales growth of 2 percent missed
analysts' estimates, its operating profit jumped 12 percent on
lower costs and as it sold more restaurants to franchisees.
Pizza Hut continued to struggle, reporting a 3 percent drop in
same-store sales, its third straight quarterly decline, even as
rival Domino's Pizza Inc <DPZ.N> last week reported domestic
growth of 10.2 percent.
Yum Brands' income from continuing operations rose to $280
million, or 77 cents per share, in the first quarter ended March
31, from $226 million, or 54 cents per share.
Excluding items, the company earned 65 cents per share, beating
the average analyst estimate of 60 cents per share, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Total revenue fell 1.8 percent to $1.42 billion as it sold more
restaurants to franchisees but managed to beat Street
expectations of $1.35 billion.
(Reporting by Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru and Lisa
Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Supriya Kurane and
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