Dunkin' Donuts' hot sandwiches, branded coffee goods drive sales in Q4, Costco has strong January

Dunkin' Brands (NASDAQ: DNKN) and Costco Wholesale (NASDAQ: COST) are reporting strong sales over recent weeks, as more people shopped at their retail locations. Both companies shared positive earnings news Thursday morning, topping expectations.

Dunkin' Brands finished off its fiscal fourth quarter with $42.1 million in revenue, a 23 percent increase from the same period last year. Same-store sales, those open for at least a year, saw sales growth of 3.5 percent.

Part of Dunkin's success lies in the brand's innovation in hot foods and sales of branded coffee products and merchandise. Dunkin' Donuts-branded goods, such as K-Cup portion packs, saw a boost in sales. Hot food items were also strong sellers for the chain, specifically breakfast sandwiches such as the new Hot & Spicy Breakfast Sandwich and Turkey Sausage Breakfast Sandwich. The company also saw more sales of its expanded afternoon menu items including chicken sandwiches and wraps. With more people coming in to purchase hot food and not just a cup of coffee, the average ticket prices and traffic increased during the quarter.

Baskin-Robbins, owned by Dunkin' Brands, saw success in its take-home items, including increased sales of cakes driven by new cake designs and take-home ice cream quarts.

The chain has also been successful in expanding its reach in "non-traditional" locations, including public libraries, hotel lobbies, and airports. Dunkin' Brands opened more than 50 non-traditional donut and ice cream shops in the U.S. in 2013.

Costco Wholesale said it, too, saw success over recent weeks as it reported on its January earnings. Comp-store sales rose 4 percent in the four weeks ended Feb. 2 compared to a year earlier. Net sales during the month grew 6 percent to $7.99 billion.

Costco plans to release its full results for the fiscal second quarter, as well as February sales results, on March 6.

For more:
-See this Dunkin' Brands press release
-See this Costco press release

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