Pizza Slips and Breakfast Soars in Yum Brand's Latest Earnings

Sales at KFC and Taco Bell boosted Yum Brands to a solid second quarter, while Pizza Hut struggled to keep up.

learn more about Kate Taylor

By Kate Taylor

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Chicken and waffle tacos are hot items for fast-food conglomerate Yum Brands right now. Pizza? Not so much.

Yum Brands reported worldwide sales grew 6 percent in the second quarter, with operating profit increasing 34 percent. Net income climbed to $334 million -- a 19 percent jump from the same period last year.

Here come some more numbers: Strong performances by KFC and Taco Bell helped drive the company's earnings. Both brands increased same-store sales by 2 percent, resulting in a 5 percent sales increase for KFC and a 3 percent increase for Taco Bell.

Pizza Hut's quarter was less promising than those of its sister brands. Sales decreased by 1 percent, with a 3 percent same-store sales decline.

Related: Chicken Prices Are Rising Because of Rooster Infertility. (We're Serious.)

The success of KFC comes at a time when chicken has become a surprisingly buzzy item for fast-food restaurants, with chains from Pizza Hut to Burger King offering new chicken menu items. Meanwhile, Taco Bell's success reflects the first quarter that the chain's much-discussed breakfast menu has had a significant impact on sales.

"At Taco Bell, we're very pleased with the initial results of our national breakfast launch and have a strong new product pipeline across all day-parts to drive a strong second half," Yum Brands CEO David Novak said in a statement.

While the success of Taco Bell's breakfast is the most buzz-worthy news for American fast-food fans, Yum Brands' greatest success in the second quarter has been international. Sales increased 21 percent in the company's China division and 18 percent in India. In the second quarter, Yum Brands opened 104 new restaurants in China, with the goal of opening at least 700 new restaurants in the country this year.

Related: Why China Is Just as Important as Breakfast in the Fast-Food Wars

Kate Taylor

Reporter

Kate Taylor is a reporter at Business Insider. She was previously a reporter at Entrepreneur. Get in touch with tips and feedback on Twitter at @Kate_H_Taylor. 

Related Topics

Business News

Police: 82-Year-Old Woman Found Alive at New York Funeral Home After Being Pronounced Dead

The woman was found breathing almost three hours after she was pronounced dead.

Business News

An NFL Rookie Scores a $514,000 Jackpot in Las Vegas

Los Angeles Rams running back Ronnie Rivers sat down to play 3-card poker and left a half million dollars richer.

Innovation

The Greasy, Glamorous Rise of Mascara

You won't believe the grimy gunk people used to smear on their eyelashes -- and still do.

Business Ideas

How to Make Thousands of Dollars on the Side As a Virtual Assistant

Apply your skills and experience to create a lucrative virtual assistant side hustle or full-time business.

Living

Invest in Yourself: 10 Things Every Working Woman Should Do This Year

When striving for success, it is easy to forget about your mental and physical health. But without health, you cannot fully succeed. Follow these ten lifestyle strategies for success in your personal and professional life.

Leadership

Two Stanford Professors Explain How to Produce Hundreds of World-Changing Ideas In 1 Hour

Cramming everyone into a conference room to "spitball" is a disaster. But with some structure and a system, literally thousands of ideas are within reach.