21 Sep 2012

Starbucks' turn-around expected to lift sales

10:07 am on 21 September 2012

Fast food chain operator Restaurant Brands says its turn-around of Starbucks should help lift sales.

The listed company says total sales at KFC, Pizza Hut and Starbucks was $96.1 million in the 16 weeks to 10 September, up 2.3% on last year.

Sales at stores open at least a year rose 4%.

Pizza Hut led the improvement, with sales rising close to 10% despite having 11 fewer stores and KFC sales were up about 2%.

Starbucks lost ground, with a 5% fall compared to last year.

Restaurant Brands chief executive Russel Creedy says reducing prices at Starbucks is a good move.

He says the success of this type of retail is determined by having strong customer numbers and any weakness to prevent that has to be corrected.

Mr Creedy says one of the first things is to ensure the brand is addressing customers' needs.

"Right now, we perceive that the punter out there is need of a bit of relief - power, rates, road user charges - everything is going up all the time and I think Starbucks are doing their bit by trying to make it a bit more affordable."

Mr Creedy says the company will launch the burger chain, Carl's Jr, later this year.