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TheStreet Open House

Sonic Doubles Earnings Per Share For Second Fiscal Quarter 2013

Stock quotes in this article: SONC

Same-Store Sales

For the second quarter ended February 28, 2013, system-wide same-store sales were flat, which was comprised of a 1.9% increase at company drive-ins and essentially flat same-store sales at franchise drive-ins. System-wide same-store sales were negatively impacted due to one less operating day in the second quarter of fiscal 2013 as a result of leap day in last year’s results. Excluding the extra day in 2012, system-wide same-store sales increased 1.3% and company drive-in same-store sales increased 3.3%.

Development

Three new franchise drive-ins were opened in the second quarter of fiscal 2013 versus 10 new franchise drive-in openings during the second quarter of fiscal 2012.

Fiscal Year 2013 Outlook

The company expects its initiatives to drive sales improvements going forward. However, uncertainty with regard to the macroeconomic environment and its impact on consumer confidence may result in sales volatility. The outlook for fiscal 2013 anticipates the following elements:

  • Positive same-store sales in the low single digit range;
  • Drive-in level margins to improve between 50 to 100 basis points;
  • Slightly more franchise drive-in openings than fiscal 2012;
  • Selling, general and administrative expenses of $17.5 to $18 million for each of the third and fourth quarters, respectively;
  • Depreciation and amortization of $10 to $10.5 million for each of the third and fourth quarters, respectively;
  • Net interest expense of approximately $28 to $28.5 million excluding the impact of the debt origination cost write-off from the $20 million early extinguishment of debt;
  • An income tax rate of between 37% and 38% for each of the third and fourth fiscal quarters, respectively;
  • Capital expenditures of $30 to $35 million which includes partial implementation of the point-of-sale system in company drive-ins and the supply chain management system; and
  • Free cash flow of $45 to $50 million for fiscal 2013.

About Sonic

Sonic, America's Drive-In, originally started as a hamburger and root beer stand in 1953 in Shawnee, Oklahoma called Top Hat Drive-In, and then changed its name to Sonic in 1959. The first drive-in to adopt the Sonic name is still serving customers in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Sonic has more than 3,500 drive-ins coast to coast, where approximately three million customers eat every day. For more information about Sonic Corp. and its subsidiaries, visit Sonic at www.sonicdrivein.com.

Earnings Conference Call

The company will host a conference call and online web simulcast this afternoon beginning at 5:00 p.m. ET. The conference call can be accessed live over the phone by dialing (888) 690-2878 or (913) 312-1296 for international callers. A replay will be available one hour after the call and can be accessed by dialing (877) 870-5176 or (858) 384-5517 for international callers; the conference ID is 6986684. The replay will be available until Monday, April 1, 2013. An online replay of the conference call will be available approximately two hours after the conclusion of the live broadcast. A link to this event will be available on the investor section of the company's website, www.sonicdrivein.com.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Forward-looking statements reflect management's expectations regarding future events and operating performance and speak only as of the date hereof. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in, or underlying, these forward-looking statements are detailed in the company's annual and quarterly report filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company undertakes no obligation to publicly release revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unforeseen events, except as required to be reported under the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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