Long John Silver, A&W up for sale
Yum Brands will focus on tacos, pizza and chicken as it aggressively expands into China.
Instead, Yum wants to focus on its more popular fast-food restaurants: Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC. The company plans to expand those lines in the U.S. and internationally, it said in a statement.
Yum is all about its international business these days and is focused on its growth in China. About 65% of its profits come from overseas -- up from 22% in 1998 -- and it apparently doesn't think those two restaurants will do well in other countries.
They don't even do that well in the United States. Long John Silver's and A&W were just a sliver of Yum's operations, with only about 1,630 locations total.
Yum has 37,000 restaurants across the globe, and it expects its international profits to grow to 75% by 2015.
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No word on how much Yum could get in the sale. But the two chains are so small that the company isn't expecting the sale to affect earnings or cash flow. Taco Bell has been the big winner for Yum, contributing about 60% of the company's U.S. profits.
Shareholders welcomed the news today, pushing Yum stock up more than 2% to $48.90 in midday trading.
I will definitely miss the hushpuppies at LJS... I remember when my son was young, and we lived in Tucson, there was an LJS a block from the local drive-in movie theater, and we would stop and get chicken planks and hushpuppies to munch on during the movies... With LOTS of their great tartar sauce, too!
I also have very fond memories of stopping at the A&W in Williams, AZ in college when I was driving back and forth from my California home to Univ of Tulsa. Loved the frosty mugs of root beer, and later on, their mini corndogs were great!
Hopefully someone will by them and restore them to their former glory. YUM is just a typical profits-chasing corporation not really interested in the quality of their product or the experience.
Around here, Central Texas, Yum has been in a consolidation mode on the stores, combining LJS with either KFC or A&W in the same counter. Quality of food, service, and experience has declined remarkably whereever this has been done. There are absolutely no stand-alone LJS or A&W store in the area, and only a handful of KFC stores. They have shut down all sit-down Pizza Huts, depending solely on delivery and "express" locations. The only single brand stores left are Taco Bells, and thankfully those are few and far between. We have much better local chains of that type to choose from.
That sucks. A&W burgers are awesome! The rootbeer and hush puppies are great. The crispy breading on the fish and chicken is fantastic!!! I hope some other company buys them and doesn't change a thing with the food.
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