Wendy’s announces corporate restructuring and possible job cuts

Wendy’s said Friday it was planning a reorganization __ and possible company layoffs __ to speed up decision-making and invest more in developing new restaurants.

The news comes just a week after competitor McDonald’s announced a similar corporate restructuring, also with plans to accelerate restaurant openings and improve efficiency. McDonald’s said it would provide employees with more details on layoffs by April 3; Wendy’s did not give a date.

Dublin, Ohio-based Wendy’s, the third-biggest U.S. burger chain after McDonald’s and Burger King, said Friday it expects its full-year sales to grow 10.5% in 2022 to $2.1 billion. That would be higher than Wall Street’s expectations. The company plans to release its fourth quarter and full year results on March 1st.

Todd Penegor, Wendy’s President and CEO, said during a conference call with investors that the company is beginning its transformation from a position of strength, with 12 consecutive years of growth in global same-store sales or restaurant sales for at least 15 years months are open. Its US business accelerated in the fourth quarter with promotions like a peppermint-flavored Frosty and a $5 biggie bag that combines a sandwich, chicken nuggets, fries and a drink.

But Penegor said Wendy needs to focus more on global store growth and digital sales. Wendy’s has nearly 6,000 restaurants in the US and just over 1,000 in 31 other countries.

Penegor emphasized that Wendy’s will limit its focus to traditional stores, not just takeout options or other experimental designs. He also wants the company to continue its momentum in the fast-growing breakfast segment __, which it re-entered in 2020, and improve store operations.

“If you take some layers out of the organization and allow us to make decisions faster, it can encourage focus, increase efficiency and increase productivity,” he said.

Wendy’s shares rose 6% to close at $23.08.

Wendy’s announced Friday that it was stepping down the job of Kurt Kane, its US President and Chief Commercial Officer, who will be leaving the company. Leigh A. Burnside, the company’s chief accounting officer and senior vice president, also announced her departure.

The company also said its board has approved up to $500 million in share buybacks and has doubled its quarterly dividend to 25 cents a share.

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https://www.local10.com/business/2023/01/13/wendys-announces-corporate-revamp-possible-job-cuts/ Wendy’s announces corporate restructuring and possible job cuts

Sarah Y. Kim

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