YUM Analyst Meeting Highlights… and Our Thoughts

By Mark Kalinowski Published on December 5, 2018 at 12:00 AM

Earlier today, Yum Brands (YUM; Buy) hosted an Analyst Meeting in New York City. The theme was “A World of Opportunities,” which highlights the global opportunities for the company’s KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell brands. Management says it wants all three brands to be distinctive, relevant, and easy brands. Going forward, management also indicates that collaboration amongst the brands will increase in importance, with management saying “our ability to collaborate will set us apart from our competitors.” This will be a positive if it can come to fruition, but for those on the Street — and we have been amongst them — who believe value can be unlocked by separating out one or more of Yum’s brands, management seems more dead set against that path than ever. Management states that there’s “simply no other restaurant company or retailer in the world like us,” and that “we’ve done from a mindset of being equity operators to being brand builders.” Management adds that “the four growth drivers drive same-store sales, they drive new unit growth, they drive system sales.” Those four growth drivers are: (1) distinctive, relevant, and easy brands, (2) unrivaled culture and talent, (3) bold restaurant development, and (4) unmatched franchise operating capability. We reiterate our Buy rating on YUM and note the following:

Read More