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Sonic's CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Lastly, I would like to point out that remarks made during this conference call are based on time-sensitive information that is accurate only as of today's date, March 21, 2012. The archived replay of this conference call webcast will be available through March 28, 2012. This call is the property of Sonic Corp. Any distribution, transmission, broadcast or a rebroadcast of this call in any form, without the expressed written consent of the company, is prohibited.

Finally, we have scheduled this call, which includes the Q&A portion, to last one hour. If we have not gotten to your question within that hour time slot, please contact me, area code (405) 225-4846, and we'll make the appropriate arrangements to answer your questions.

We also want to note that due to an error from Business Wire, the original release issued at 4:01 Eastern Time was incorrect. The corrected release has been posted.

With those announcements, I'll turn the call over to Cliff Hudson, the company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

J. Clifford Hudson

Thank you, Claudia, and good afternoon to all of you on the line with us this afternoon. We appreciate your joining us today for this conference call, and appreciate your interest in our second quarter results and our current business performance. As you saw from the earnings release, our systemwide same-store sales for the quarter increased 3.5%. We were pleased with this improvement in sales that we experienced in the quarter and believe it reflects the changes we've implemented with respect to a variety of aspects of our business, layered pricing, improved service, improved products, and so on, in the last year and more. We think it's worth noting that we've seen positive same-store sales now for fiscal year 2011. We finished last August and we've seen positive same-store sales for the first 2 fiscal quarters of fiscal year 2012. As you might have expected, we benefited from warmer temperatures in many of our markets throughout this quarter and in February. This temperature benefit was particularly true in January and the early part of February. At the same time, it's fair to say that some of our core markets experienced more typical winter conditions during December, then also in the second half of February. So mixed weather at times throughout the quarter. Also, the additional day in the leap year in the month of February did contribute about 1% to our positive same-store sales. Notwithstanding this warmer weather and the benefits of leap year, same-store sales continue to improve on both a 1 and 2-year basis. So we're glad to see this positive trend in the business.

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