Domino’s is very well situated as the largest US pizza chain (#1 delivery & #2 carryout sales dollars) with a 38% domestic share among the top 4 players. Its brand positioning emphasizes leading-edge, digital ordering convenience/speed and seamless payments as opposed to “flavor-of-the-month” LTOs. The brand’s reputation as a delivery leader is reinforced by efforts to promote tech solutions to speed/improve delivery (like GPS tracking, expansion of its AnyWare order platforms & automated delivery cars).

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1Q:20 Same Store Sales

RR’s 1Q:20 Same Store Sales Report provides annual & quarterly sales results for the $1B+ restaurant chains as well as key economic data including retail sales, CPI, gas prices, GDP growth and unemployment rate.

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1Q20 Investor Calls: Key Points & Analysis

In a shocking Black Swan event, the industry suffered the forced closing of all dining rooms in late March 2020. While this shock was less troublesome to concepts already heavily oriented towards drive-thru and off-premise, the devastation for sit-down oriented chains has been previously unimaginable.

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Insights Journal: May 2020

Encouraging comp recovery trends with: QSR doing more than holding its own; chicken chains continuing to amaze; pizza perfectly suited for circumstances; and sit-down better than expected. Also included is some good news from Starbucks China. Finally, we include executive summaries for McDonald’s and Wendy’s.

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Wendy’s believes that “people deserve better than what they’ve been getting” and its brand objective is to provide: relevant restaurants; food that is fresh, made with honest ingredients & craveable taste; service that is friendly, accurate & fast; and value based upon a competitive price & Wendy’s quality. “Quality is our Recipe” brand positioning is based upon the use of distinctive square burger patties made with 1/4 pound of fresh, never frozen 100% pure North American beef that is seasoned on the grill and served hot & juicy with freshly prepared toppings.

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Dashboard: April 2020

Sales are Rebounding from April Lows; Declining Free Delivery Offers; Government Assistance Finally Kicks In; Lower Commodity Costs Helping Margins; Franchisee Valuations are Less Bearish, but QSR and FSR Outlooks Diverge; Stocks Rebound Sharply After March Free Fall; 1031 Transaction Volume Declines Sharply Despite Stable Cap Rates.

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McDonald’s is gaining traction with an extremely ambitious modernization program with many moving parts that include efforts to: retain existing customers by bolstering core strength in family occasions & food-led breakfast; regain lost customers by improving food taste, quality, convenience & value; and convert casual customers to committed by elevating & leveraging the McCafé platform (snacking daypart) while also improving its food health profile. The brand seeks to attract a new, hipper, technophile customer who can afford higher prices.

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IHOP is well established as the largest player in the $1B+ family chain segment with 28% market share and the largest marketing budget. The brand’s breakfast heritage leadership positioning is centered around pancakes (complimented by its never empty coffee pot & flavored syrups), a fun/likeable experience and engaging servers who provide a warm & welcoming environment. While “this is not your grandmother’s IHOP” with a younger demo vs. segment peers, value-oriented guests still represent 40% of the total which reflects IHOP’s “middle America” positioning.

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