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Starbucks Surges 6% on Earnings Beat, Strong Comparable Sales (Update)

This story has been updated with comments from Starbucks' earnings conference call.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Starbucks (SBUX) surged more than 6% in extended hours trading after the coffee chain posted fiscal third-quarter results that surpassed Wall Street expectations.

The company said that for the June-ending quarter net earnings rose 25% to $417.8 million, or 55 cents a share. Revenue rose 13% to $3.74 billion.

The results beat the consensus estimate of a 53-cent profit among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters. Revenue was expected to rise 12.5% to $3.72 billion.

Global comparable store sales were up 8%; same-store sales in the United States jumped 9% during the quarter. Starbucks said comparable sales in its China and Asia Pacific markets rose 9%, double from the fiscal second quarter.

Starbucks' Americas segment is "firing on all cylinders," fueled by a "transformed and reinvented food program," Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said on the conference call.

However, CFO Troy Alstead cautioned that Starbucks does not expect a repeat performance in the fourth quarter. "A number of fantastic things came together" to make that happen, he said on the conference call.

As the company looks to the fourth quarter and to fiscal 2014, it expects sales comps between 5% and 7%, roughly in line with the first half of 2013, he said.

During the most recent quarter, the company opened 341 net new stores for a total of 19,209 stores globally, Starbucks said.

Shares were up 6.5% to $72.50 in after-market trading.

The results "represent the best across-the-board third-quarter performance in our 42-year history," Shultz said in the earnings release. "Our more than 19,000 store global footprint, our fast-growing CPG [consumer products group] presence and our best-in-class digital, card, loyalty and mobile capabilities are creating a 'flywheel' effect elevating the relevancy of all things Starbucks, and driving profitability."

The company raised its full-year earnings forecast to between $2.22 and $2.23 a share.

Starbucks introduced fiscal 2014 targets. The company expects revenue growth between 10% and 13%, which includes mid-single digit comparable store sales growth. Starbucks also forecasted 2014 earnings per share in the range of $2.55 to $2.65, representing growth of 18% to 22%.

Earlier this week, Starbucks and yogurt-maker Danone, announced a plan to jointly create a selection of specialty yogurt products in participating Starbucks stores in 2014 and in grocery channels in 2015 as part of the coffee chain's growing Evolution Fresh brand.

During its conference call, Starbucks explained that its mobile payments business is gaining customer acceptance. Adam Brotman, the company's chief digital officer, said that 10% of all transactions in Starbucks' U.S. stores are made through a mobile phone.

Dunkin' Brands (DNKN) said earlier Thursday that second-quarter comparable store sales were boosted by new products the doughnut and coffee chain offered.

-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

To contact Laurie Kulikowski, send an email to: Laurie.Kulikowski@thestreet.com.

>To submit a news tip, email: tips@thestreet.com.

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