New York Times Earnings Call Notes

New York Times’ (NYT) Mark J. T. Thompson on Q2 2016 Results

More visual with video, virtual reality and live interactive journalism

“In the quarter, consistent with where we believe consumption is moving, we increased our efforts to make our report more visual with video, virtual reality and live interactive journalism. In the quarter, we produced our 12th and 13th virtual reality films, and have done more than 400 live streams using Facebook Live.”

Increasing digital-only subscriptions

“Combined at the end of the quarter, we have 1,424,000 digital-only subscriptions, an increase of more than 25% year-over-year. The acceleration in the number of digital subscriptions makes this not just a growing but an accelerating revenue stream.”

Digital advertising slightly below expectations

“Digital advertising was somewhat lower than we expected for the quarter, down 7% compared to Q2 2015. We continue to see large year-over-year increases in smartphone, branded content and programmatic, but these were not enough to offset declines in web homepage and other traditional display advertising.”

Decreased dependence on print advertising

“But it’s worth pointing out that print advertising only accounted for 23% of total revenue in Q2 2016. We are, in other words, far less reliant on it than we once were.”

Buffalo Wild Wings 2Q16 Earnings Call Notes

Buffalo Wild Wing’s (BWLD) Sally J. Smith on Q2 2016 Results

Total revenue increased by 15%

“Our total revenue increased by 15% from new restaurant openings and franchise acquisitions over the last year. We controlled cost and expenses well in a challenging sales environment and this discipline along with our earnings growth helped us to achieve earnings per diluted share of $1.27, a 13.1% increase compared to the prior year.”

Differentiating by embracing two emerging sports: soccer and eSports

“Buffalo Wild Wings remain strong and we are continuing to differentiate our brand for the long-term by embracing two emerging sports: soccer and eSports. We’re establishing B-Dubs as the place for soccer fans as we believe winning that market will provide growth in the future… We’re seizing the opportunity of eSports, or competitive video gaming, as it attracts a young, digitally connected and engaged fan.”

Takeout sales were 15.7% in the quarter, increasing 25% over the prior year

“Takeout sales were 15.7% in the quarter, increasing 25% over the prior year on a dollar basis. Our digital ordering platform continues to see great adoption was 16% of takeout orders coming from digital and they had a 7% higher average check in the second quarter.”

Have begun to test delivery

“This is a unique opportunity for our brand and Buffalo Wild Wings was ranked fourth behind pizza and sandwich concepts as the company consumers most wanted delivery from in a recent sell-side research report from Morgan Stanley. We have begun delivery in two restaurants and plan to diligently test and evaluate this opportunity.”

McDonald Earnings 2Q16 Call Notes

McDonald’s (MCD) Stephen J. Easterbrook on Q2 2016 Results

The most recent customer satisfaction scores reflect improvements in seven of our nine largest markets

“Customers are noticing the steps we’re taking to build a better McDonald’s. The most recent customer satisfaction scores reflect improvements in seven of our nine largest markets. In the U.S., we are seeing further evidence of improved brand perceptions according to a recent YouGov report that measures consumer perceptions across 1,400 brands. McDonald’s was ranked fourth most improved brand across all brands measured, and the most improved within QSR.”

Recent softening of the IEO industry

“Beginning with the U.S., comparable sales for the second quarter increased 1.8%. Whilst modestly positive, this growth was not as strong as the last two quarters. This is due, in part, to the recent softening of the IEO industry, which experienced minimal growth for the trailing 12-month period ending in May at only 40 basis points”

We’re expanding our delivery business

“In addition, we’re expanding our delivery business by tapping into growing digital channels, as well as other vendors, to offer added convenience to Chinese customers.”

Kevin M. Ozan

80% of our global restaurants are franchised

“With more than 80% of our global restaurants franchised, the largest driver of operating income continues to be our franchise margins.”

Benefiting from favorable commodity costs but facing rising labor costs

“While we are benefiting from favorable commodity costs around the world, we are facing rising labor costs in many of our markets. As a result, we are carefully balancing price increases with a focus on maintaining our strong value proposition, which remains a key pillar of McDonald’s brand, to drive guest counts. In the U.S., second quarter pricing year-over-year was up about 3% compared with food away from home inflation of 2.6%.”

AMD Q2 2016 Earnings Call Notes

Advanced Micro Devices Lisa Su on Q2 2016 Results

The Radeon RX family resets expectations around the experiences and features gamers now want

“Our strong second quarter graphics performance was capped by the launch of our new Polaris-based RX 480 GPUs at the end of June, which helped contribute to our highest desktop channel GPU shipments since the fourth quarter of 2014. The Radeon RX family resets expectations around the experiences and features gamers now want in a mainstream GPU. We are pleased with the Polaris launch, initial channel sales, and OEM design wins. We expect this strong demand to continue and help drive revenue growth in the third quarter, with the launch of the RX 470 and RX 460 desktop GPUs and Polaris-based notebooks from our OEM customers.”

Microsoft announced two new members of the Xbox One family powered by AMD

“Last quarter, at E3, Microsoft announced two new members of the Xbox One family powered by AMD. The Xbox One S is the slimmest Xbox console ever and the first to support HDR. The system is expected to go on sale in the coming weeks. Microsoft also announced their next generation game console, codenamed Project Scorpio for the 2017 holidays. Project Scorpio is designed to be fully compatible with existing Xbox One software while leveraging AMD’s leadership gaming technologies to create more immersive 4K and VR gaming experiences.”

Semi-custom shipments to peak for the year in the third quarter

“As in the previous two years, we expect semi-custom shipments to peak for the year in the third quarter, as both Microsoft and Sony prepare for the holidays. Based on strong demand, we believe semi-custom unit shipments and revenue will grow on an annual basis.”

Net loss was $40 million with loss per share of $0.05

“Net loss was $40 million with loss per share of $0.05, calculated using 794 million basic shares in the quarter. We recorded a pre-tax gain of $150 million, related to the ATMP JV transaction, an equity loss of $3 million based on our 15% ownership stake and taxes of $27 million related to the JV transaction. Adjusted EBITDA was a positive $36 million, compared to negative $22 million in the prior quarter.”

Hasbro 2Q2016 Earnings Call Notes

Hasbro (HAS) Brian Goldner on Q2 2016 Results

Acquisition of animation studio Boulder Strong

“Last week we significantly enhanced our animation capabilities with the acquisition of Boulder Media. Boulder is a leading animation studio based in Dublin, Ireland. This 150 person-team is creating award-winning content for networks around the world. We are very excited to Boulder join Hasbro, as we build a world-class team in storytelling and content-creation. The acquisition is not expected to have material impact on our 2016 financial results, but strategically it reflects our mindset of investing in capabilities around the brand blueprint.”

Capturing excitement created by social media

“By responding quickly and bringing games to market in only a few months, we are capturing the excitement created by social media in our face-to-face gaming business. Hasbro’s newest game, identified through our social listening expertise, is Speak Out. Available this fall, the game captures the excitement around mouthpiece challenge videos.”

Current brands and future launches position us well heading into fall and holiday season

“Hasbro franchise brands increased 3% overall, or 5% absent FX, with double-digit growth from both NERF and PLAY-DOH. Revenues from our partner’s brands increased 15%, led by STAR WARS and the addition of DISNEY PRINCESS and DISNEY’S FROZEN. These brands and future launches, including the introduction of Furby Connect, Dreamworks Trolls, and products supporting the December release of Lucasfilm’s ROGUE 1, A STAR WARS Story, position us well heading into the fall and holiday season.”


SK Addition

The toy industry continues to grow at a good rate around the world

“If you look around the world, the industry is growing at quite a good rate. In most markets around the world it’s growing from mid to high single digits. In a few markets it’s growing as high as double digits, including Spain, Italy, Russia, and Mexico. Our business continues to grow around the world.”

VMware 2Q2016 Earnings Call Notes

VMware (VMW) Patrick Gelsinger on Q2 2016 Results

Leader in cloud management for third year in row

“Our leadership in cloud management was acknowledged by leading analyst firm IDC during Q2. They named VMware as the market share leader in both the worldwide cloud systems management and the data center automation software markets based on 2015 revenues. This is the third consecutive year that VMware has topped both categories.”

Our expanded relationship with Dell will be very positive

“I want to talk briefly about the proposed merger between Dell and EMC, which EMC indicates is expected to close within the originally announced timeframe. We believe our expanded relationship with Dell will be very positive for our customers, partners and shareholders. One of the core tenets of this relationship is the commitment from Michael Dell that VMware will retain and continue to invest in its strong independent partner ecosystem. Overall, we were very pleased with the business through our OEM partners in Q2 and we expect our relationship with Dell to build upon the strong partnership we’ve built with EMC over many years.”

We are seeing broad adoption across all customer segments for NSX capabilities

“We were especially pleased with our results across our portfolio of newer growth businesses. In Networking, we had another great quarter with NSX license bookings more than doubling and the number of customers now exceeding 1700. We are seeing broad adoption across all customer segments for NSX capabilities, including micro segmentation, IT automation, and application continuity. We continue to extend our leadership in hyper-converged infrastructure software, with approximately 5,000 customers now using Virtual SAN since its launch just over two years ago and up from about 3500 just a quarter ago. Our hyper-converged license bookings, including VSAN and VxRail software, grew over 200% year-over-year. The new VxRail appliance we jointly developed with EMC was launched earlier this year and has enjoyed an impressive start, benefiting also from Dell’s decision to resell VxRail.”

Acquisition of Arkin Net

“We continuously complement our R&D engine with the infusion of acquired technologies and talent. To that end, in Q2 we completed our acquisition of Arkin Net, a leader in software-defined data center security. Arkin was described in a recent article as offering a GPS or Google maps for networking traffic. Its management platform is purpose built for NSX and, combined with vRealize, will provide customers with a security and operations management plane for the SDDC. We are confident that Arkin will further expand vRealize suite’s position as the industry’s clear leader in cloud management.”

Board authorized a repurchase of up to $1.2 billion for 2016

“I’ll spend a moment on our stock repurchase plan. As we mentioned on our last call, our Board authorized a repurchase of up to $1.2 billion for 2016, which we plan on using to repurchase class A shares in the open market before the end of the year. We expect to begin repurchasing our stock after the EMC shareholder votes.”