Burger King, Tim Hortons owner's profit more than doubles

Exterior pictures of both Tim Hortons and Burger King(in the same frame) located across the street from one another on the Queensway in Etobicoke.
Vince Talotta | Toronto Star | Getty Images

Restaurant Brands, the owner of Burger King and Tim Hortons, reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit as comparable sales at its burger chain topped estimates and costs fell.

Total comparable sales at Burger King rose 2.8 percent in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, beating the average estimate of a 2.5 percent rise, according to research firm Consensus Metrix.

Total costs at Restaurant Brands fell about 16 percent to $619.8 million, while total comparable sales at Tim Hortons, which operates mainly in Canada, rose 0.2 percent in the quarter.

The company's net profit attributable to shareholders more than doubled to $118.4 million, or 50 cents per share, from a year ago, when it took a $37 million charge for the merger of Burger King and Tim Hortons.

On an adjusted basis, Restaurant Brands earned 44 cents per share, beating the average analysts' estimate of 42 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The Oakville, Ontario-based company's total revenue rose about 5 percent to $1.11 billion and was nearly in line with estimates.