Dunkin' Posts Slight Earnings Miss, Says 800 Stores Could Close Permanently

Dunkin' Brands posts second-quarter results just below analysts’ estimates and says it could close as many as 800 of its stores permanently.

Dunkin' Brands  (DNKN) - Get Report on Thursday posted second-quarter results just below analysts’ estimates and said it may permanently close as many as 800 of its stores as the donut and coffee fast-food chain succumbed to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and economic shutdown.

The Canton, Mass.-based company said it earned $36.5 million, or 49 cents an adjusted share, vs. $59.6 million, or the same 86 cents an adjusted share, in the comparable year-ago quarter. 

Analysts polled by FactSet had been expecting earnings of 50 cents a share. Sales rang in at $287.4 million vs. $359.3 million a year ago. Analysts had been expecting sales in the range of $278.3 million.

Comparable same-store sales, a key metric among retail and restaurant chains, fell 18.7%, even as the company armed its franchisees with masks, protective equipment and plexiglass to continue serving customers at its open and drive-through locations.

Comparable same-store sales at its Baskin-Robbins locations fell 6%.

Dunkin' said it expects some 800 Dunkin' locations, including the previously announced 450 limited-menu Speedway locations, may permanently close in 2020 "... as part of a real estate portfolio rationalization." 

The 800 locations would represent approximately 8% of the Dunkin' total restaurant footprint and approximately 2% of 2019 Dunkin' systemwide sales, inclusive of the Speedway closings.

While Dunkin’ said it will continue to keep any long-term financial guidance under wraps, it did announce that its board agreed to reinstate the company’s quarterly dividend. 

The company will pay a cash dividend of 40.25 cents a share, payable on Sept. 9 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Sept. 1.

Shares of Dunkin' were down 5.39% at $67.82 in trading on Thursday.