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Sonic Doubles Earnings Per Share For Second Fiscal Quarter 2013

Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ: SONC), the nation's largest chain of drive-in restaurants, today announced results for the second fiscal quarter ended February 28, 2013.

Key highlights of the company's second quarter report included:
  • The company's net income per diluted share increased 100% to $0.06 in the second quarter of fiscal 2013 compared with net income per diluted share of $0.03 in the second quarter of fiscal 2012;
  • With one less day than prior year as a result of leap year, system-wide same-store sales were flat during the second quarter, with an increase of 1.9% at company drive-ins; excluding the impact of the extra day in 2012, system-wide same-store sales increased 1.3% and company drive-in same-store sales increased 3.3%;
  • Company drive-in margins improved by 140 basis points; and
  • The company purchased over $6 million of stock representing approximately 1% of its outstanding stock.

“Given more than a 1% negative impact from the loss of leap year day, we are pleased with our system-wide same-store sales performance,” said Clifford Hudson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We are especially pleased with the growth in same-store sales at our company drive-ins which led to a 140 basis point improvement in drive-in margins. Our innovative product pipeline and shift from local to national media expenditures are having a positive impact across our core, developing and new markets.

“In the second quarter we repaid $23.7 million of debt and increased our current share repurchase program by $15 million to $55 million. Since authorization of the current program in August of 2012, we have repurchased $25.6 million of stock representing approximately 4% of our outstanding shares.” added Hudson. “As we have done in the recent past, we will utilize the strength and flexibility of our business model to grow operating income and use our free cash flow 1 to invest in our brand, opportunistically repurchase stock and pay down debt.

“In addition, over the next one to three years, initiatives such as our new point-of-sale system will complement our same-store sales initiatives to increase sales and profits. This, combined with a new lower-cost, small building prototype, will improve the return on investment of new drive-ins, encouraging increased development in fiscal 2014 and subsequent years. Our multi-layered growth strategy, comprised of same-store sales growth, operating leverage, new unit growth and effective deployment of free cash flow, is expected to drive double-digit earnings growth in the near and long term.”

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