Wendy's International

(WEN) - Get Report

posted third-quarter earnings that beat analysts' expectations by a penny, helped by sales at its Tim Hortons restaurants.

The Dublin, Ohio, operator of the Wendy's hamburger chain earned $48.6 million, or 41 cents a share, up from $44.5 million, or 35 cents a share, last year. The 14-analyst consensus estimate on

First Call/Thomson Financial

was 40 cents a share.

Revenue grew 8.5% to $577.6 million from $532.2 million a year ago.

The company also said it aims to achieve long-term EPS growth of 12% to 15%, excluding asset gains and unusual items. The EPS goal for 2000 continues to be in the 14% to 17% range. Analysts on average expect the company to earn $1.50 a share in 2000 and $1.69 a share in 2001, compared with $1.32 a share in 1999.