Sherman Oaks, California-based Worldwide Restaurant Concepts, Inc, today [Tuesday] reported financial results for the sixteen week (Q3) and forty week periods ended 3 February 2002.

The company reported revenues of US$82.4m for the Q3 of fiscal 2002, an increase of 7.1% over the US$76.9m reported in the comparable period in fiscal 2001. Net income for the quarter was US$373,000, or US$0.01/diluted share, compared with a net loss of US$1.4m, or US$0.05/diluted share in the same period a year ago. Positive same store sales comparisons at all divisions and a continued focus on cost controls more than offset the impact of continued weakness in the economy and Australian dollar exchange rate. Adjusting for the 5.3% decline in the Australian dollar, Q3 revenue would have been US$84.6m, an increase of 10% year on year.

For the forty weeks ended 3 February 2002, the company reported revenues of IS$203.6m, an increase of 9.3% from revenues of US$186.2m in the same period last year. Net income rose to US$2.4m, $0.09/diluted share, a 33% increase from US$1.8m, US$0.06/diluted share, year on year. These increases are primarily attributable to the ongoing expansion of the Pat & Oscar's brand, resulting in the division's third consecutive quarter of being accretive to earnings.

Positive same store sales at all divisions

The company reported same store sales growth of 14.8% for Sizzler Australia, 1.1% for Sizzler USA, 7% for KFC and 1.7% for Pat & Oscar's, compared to the Q3 last year.

"This quarter marks the first time since the first quarter of fiscal 2001 that we've reported positive same store sales at every one of our divisions. This reflects our continued effort to focus our marketing and product development initiatives on the things our guests say they care about most," said Charles Boppell, president and CEO of Worldwide Restaurants Concepts.

Strong same store sales at the company's international operations are the result of strong promotions and ongoing investment in facilities. Sizzler Australia continued to generate very strong customer response from its promotion featuring the salad bar with a seafood add-on. KFC's strong sales reflect the continued success of bundled meals targeting families, as well as the impact of recently completed remodels that feature face-to-face drive thrus.

Pat & Oscar's expansion continues

During the Q3, Pat & Oscar's opened its 13th and 14th locations in Southern California. In spite of the pre-opening costs associated with these new restaurants, Pat & Oscar's was accretive to the company's earnings for the third consecutive quarter. These new locations are part of the company's ongoing strategy of expanding in markets adjacent to the core San Diego market.

"By the end of our next fiscal year, we expect to increase our restaurant count by an additional 30% to 40%," said Boppell. Since completion of the acquisition of Pat & Oscar's in August 2000, Worldwide Restaurant Concepts has overseen a 75% increase in restaurant count, growing the concept from a base of eight restaurants to the current level of fourteen. The 15th restaurant is expected to open later this fiscal year.

Outlook

"Although the business environment has been challenging and may continue to be so for some time, we've never lost sight of the strategies we laid out at the start of this fiscal year. In the first two quarters, we were busy laying the foundation for the performance that we reported today.

"We're pleased with our results and will continue to be disciplined in the execution of our strategies of growing our domestic and international Sizzler businesses, investing in our Australian KFC's, and increasing the geographic reach of the Pat & Oscar's brand," concluded Boppell.