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We can’t get enough cheap fried chicken

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Appetite for fried chicken grew in the past three months, lifting KFC’s sales beyond expectations.

KFC operator Collins Foods, which also owns Sizzler restaurants, released unaudited financial results for the three months to July 20 on Monday.

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The company’s first quarter profit is up 21 per cent to $4.5 million.

A large contributor is people’s appetite for fried chicken, with same store sales rising 3.0 per cent across Collins Foods’ 169 KFC outlets.

Managing director and chief executive Kevin Perkins says KFC’s trade in the first quarter has “exceeded expectations.”

KFC Queensland delivered 2.6 per cent growth in same store sales, while KFC Western Australia and Northern Territory generated 4.2 per cent growth in same store sales.

Sizzler Australia stores overall earnings continued to lag the prior year across this period.

Mr Perkins said the board was closely monitoring Sizzlers’ transformation potential through its Get Refreshed initiative.

“While this program is still in the early stages of implementation, the complete Get Refreshed package including facility modernisation in Sizzler Cleveland continues to deliver encouraging early results,” he said.

He said he was pleased with the company’s overall sales and earnings over the first quarter of 2014/15 and said the outlook was positive.

Collins Foods’ earnings of $13.3 million are up 24 per cent.

The company’s shares were 10 cents higher, or 4.35 per cent, at $2.40 at 1055 AEST.

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