Monday, July 6, 2015

Is Wendy's eating McDonald's lunch?

The Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger is packing in fast food heavy users

Is Wendy's eating McDonald's lunch?

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Wendy’s recently-launched Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger may be the chain´s best-selling new product introduction in at least a decade.
Wendy’s recently-launched Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger may be the chain's best-selling new product introduction in at least a decade.

Shares of McDonald's slipped this morning after the global fast-food giant, which controls roughly half the U.S. hamburger chain market, reported lower than expected sales and profits, and projected a "relatively flat" summer, as Mark Kalinowski, fast food analyst at Janney Capital Markets in Philadelphia, told clients in a report this morning.

"We believe one reason for this is a resurgent Wendy’s," writes Kalinowski. "In the U.S.. Wendy’s recently-launched Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger appears to be on track as the best-selling new product introduction by that burger concept in at least a decade. This pressure on McDonald’s could last over the third quarter as a whole, and perhaps beyond, if Wendy’s adds its Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger as a permanent menu item – which looks increasingly likely."

Wendy's, which recently topped Burger King as the No.2 U.S. hamburger chain (though still far behind Mickey D), could come off a "so-so" Spring to report third-quarter sales up a big 5%, Kalinowski writes. His poll of McDonald's franchisees show many are so far unimpressed by their company's recent healthier but smaller product offerings.

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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

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Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

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