Restaurant Chains Try to Boost Sales by Luring Football Fans With New Deals

  • Stock Market News
Restaurant Chains Try to Boost Sales by Luring Football Fans With New Deals
Credit: © Reuters.

By Liz Moyer -- Fast-food chains are hoping to boost sales by rolling out new menu options for football fans just in time for the NFL regular season kick off.

Wingstop Inc (NASDAQ: WING ) will introduce a chicken sandwich in September featuring different flavor varieties, something it has been testing since May in dozens of locations. That would be in addition to a boneless chicken wing value meal it introduced this summer, including 20 wings, two dips and large fries for $15.99.

Same store sales at the restaurant chain dipped 3% in the second quarter , but the new offerings are attracting a crowd, especially customers who are feeling strapped by inflation and looking for a deal.

Shares of Wingstop are flat on Thursday and down 24% for the year. Cowen recently raised its price target on the stock to $150 from $140 in part anticipating chicken sandwich sales, as well as the addition of Uber Eats (NYSE: UBER ) as a delivery platform. The new price target implies 14% upside.

Papa John's International Inc (NASDAQ: PZZA ) is rolling out a $7.99 crustless pizza – what it calls a pizza bowl in three varieties, including a meat lover bowl, a chicken alfredo bowl and a vegetable option. BTIG raised its price target to $130 from $125, citing the chain’s ability to differentiate from other chains.

Shares of Papa John's are down 1.3% on Thursday and 31% for the year, but the new target implies about 40% upside from the current trading price of $91.

Buffalo Wild Wings, which is owned by Inspire Brands, is introducing pizza to its menu. The $9.99 offer comes in two varieties, both covered with boneless chicken wings, sauce and cheese.

Even meal kit prep companies are getting into the game. Blue Apron Holdings Inc (NYSE: APRN ) is rolling out a $109.98 tailgating box, which includes the ingredients and recipes to prepare three items: pulled pork tacos, sweet and spicy chicken sandwiches, and queso fundido. 

The boxes can be ordered for deliveries starting Sept. 9 to Oct. 31 and can be done on the app or through (NYSE: WMT ) .

Blue Apron, which earlier this month cut its revenue forecast citing inflation that is affecting customer demand, is also a heavily shorted stock. It was down 3.5% on Thursday and down 17% for the year.

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