Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Root beer, roast beef, fish & chips: Who’s buying?


There’s a new batch of quick-service restaurants on the block – Arby’s, A&W and Long John Silver’s – and according to YouGov BrandIndex, A&W is the most popular of the three.

A&W, founded in 1919 and known for its root beer, had the trio’s highest satisfaction rates, said YouGov BrandIndex, which does daily consumer perception research on brands. 

A&W and Arby’s had higher satisfaction scores than an average of about two dozen fast-food chains, while Long John Silver’s fared worse. (See graphic below)

“A&W and Arby’s have a core group of supporters and satisfied customers,” said Ted Marzilli, global managing director for YouGov BrandIndex. “If I’m a buyer, that’s a strength.”

Check Out Line: July pain for retailers


Check out the continuing struggle in the retail world.USA/

U.S. retailers reported disappointing sales declines for July, suggesting shoppers are still searching for bargains and basics in the downturn.    

July’s results mark the 11th consecutive month of falling sales at stores open for at least one year, a measure known as same-store sales.

Check Out Line: Want growth? Buy up.


Check Out retail strategy for growth.APPLE/EARNINGS

A list of the top 10 companies from a “Hot 100 Retailers list” compiled by Planet Retail for the National Retail Federation showed that while a few companies grew organically, most grew as a result of a merger or acquisition.

Topping the list of companies that grew through a deal was DineEquity,  which bought Applebee’s last year. 

Check Out Line: Frugal fast food eaters taking toll on Arby’s


Check out the quarterly loss at Wendy’s/Arby’s Group. The third largest U.S. fast food chain posted a loss of $393.2 million, dragged down by a $417.9 million after-tax charge related, in part, to writing down the value of Arby’s company-owned stores.WENDYS/

While that loss looks like peanuts compared with the $61.7 billion fourth-quarter loss reported by American International Group (the biggest quarterly loss in corporate history), it comes as the restaurant chain is feeling the heat from competitors who are touting their value menus to lure cash-strapped consumers.