The Bottom Line: The burger giant has flourished in international markets even as its U.S. growth slowed. But its $1.4 billion decision to pull out of the market demonstrates the risk of global expansion.
Taste Tracker: Chocolate is for drinking at Starbucks and Shake Shack; Bennigan’s and Lazy Dog craft cocktails; Subway’s latest sandwich refresh; Modern Market embraces summer; and more menu news of the week.
A record 1,700 stores changed hands last year. High valuations and a difficult operating environment are leading many franchisees to sell their restaurants. But some say culture problems, low morale and constant disputes are playing a major role.
The Bottom Line: The drive-thru coffee chain’s sales were weak because of high gas prices and its more conservative pricing decisions. But it hurt the chain’s earnings and its reputation on Wall Street.