Sonic: 4th-Q sales will propel EPS into high end of range

OKLAHOMA CITY Sonic Corp., the operator or franchisor of 3,300 namesake drive-ins, said this month that strong same-store sales in the August-ended fourth quarter have made the company confident that it would hit the higher end of its fourth-quarter earnings target.

The chain's sales were driven by increased marketing expenditures, new menu items and a remodeling program under way throughout most of the system, the company said.

Sonic estimated the fourth-quarter increase in systemwide same-store sales to be within its 2-percent to 4-percent growth target, with results at joint-ventured units "slightly above" that range.

Sonic said it expected fourth-quarter, per-share profit to be at the higher end of its previously announced range of between 32 cents and 33 cents. A year earlier, Sonic posted profit of 29 cents per share.

Sonic plans to report full results for fiscal 2007 in mid-October.