Krispy Kreme Beats Estimates

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Krispy Kreme Doughnuts

(KREM)

reported third-quarter earnings that beat analysts' expectations by 3 cents, citing strong sales momentum and new store openings.

The Winston-Salem, N.C., doughnut chain posted earnings of $3.9 million, or 27 cents a share, compared with $1.9 million, or 20 cents a share, in the same period last year. Six analysts surveyed by

First Call/Thomson Financial

expected earnings of 24 cents a share.

Revenue for the quarter rose to $77.9 million from $56.8 million last year. Systemwide same-store sales rose 15.5% and company same-store sales increased 23.6%.

The company also raised its earnings forecasts for the year ending in January to $1.05 a share and for fiscal 2002 to $1.30 a share. Analysts on average expect the company to earn $1.01 a share in fiscal 2001 and $1.26 a share in fiscal 2002. In addition, Krispy Kreme raised its projected growth for fourth-quarter systemwide same-store sales to 10%.

Krispy Kreme's shares were recently up $1.31, or 1.7%, to $78 in

Nasdaq

trading.