Yum CEO: China sales hit by anti-Western protests, impact now dissipating
"I was pleased with both KFC's and Taco Bell's performance, each of which returned to a focus on core menu items, but in ways that were distinctive, disruptive and relevant. Both brands had accelerating same-store sales growth, despite sluggish QSR industry trends, especially in the U.S... Sales were off to a good start in the first six weeks of the quarter in the China Division. However, anticipated tougher laps in the second half of Q3 were compounded by an international court ruling on claims regarding the South China Sea, which triggered a series of regional protests and negative sentiment against a few international companies with well-known Western brands. If not for this event, we believe the China Division would have delivered its fifth consecutive quarter of positive same-store sales growth. The good news is the incident was short-lived and the sales impact continued to dissipate through August and September. Despite the protests, Pizza Hut Casual Dining continued its trend of quarterly sequential improvement," said Yum CEO Greg Creed.