During November 2012, the Company’s 2010 Credit Facility was amended to exclude the initial purchase price and conversion costs for the acquired restaurants from the Company’s debt covenant calculations. As a result, the Company expects to be compliant with its covenant requirements through the life of the facility.Fiscal 2012 Guidance Global same-store sales were positive 7.1% through the end of the third quarter. Accordingly, the Company is raising full year guidance on global same-store sales for fiscal 2012 to positive 6% to 6.5% from 5% to 6% to reflect the strong third quarter performance tempered by a difficult 5.8% comparison in the fourth quarter. Global same-store sales for fiscal 2011 were 3.1%. Popeyes now expects its global new openings will be in the range of 140-150 restaurants, compared to previous guidance of 135-155 restaurants. Many of the fourth quarter units are scheduled to open in late December. The Company expects net unit growth of 65-85, compared to previous guidance of 60-90 net unit growth. Total net unit growth in 2011 was 65. Adjusted earnings per diluted share are now expected to be in the range of $1.19-$1.21, an increase from our previous guidance of $1.17 to $1.19. This represents an approximate 21% increase over the $0.99 of adjusted earnings per diluted share reported in fiscal 2011. Our guidance includes approximately $0.01 for the 53 rd week in fiscal 2012. The Company also reiterates its guidance on the following items:
- General and administrative expenses are expected to be between $67 and $68 million for FY 2012, at approximately 3% of system-wide sales.
- We expect our full year effective tax rate to be approximately 37%.
- In 2012, the Company plans to repurchase approximately $15 million of its outstanding shares, continuing its efforts to steadily grow shareholder value.
- Excluding our pending acquisition of 29 restaurant properties for $13.8 million, we expect capital expenditures for 2012 to be $10 to $12 million. Subject to the bankruptcy court’s ruling, we anticipate investing an additional $2 to $3 million in the fourth quarter for the conversion of units in Minnesota and California.