Last year was mixed for stocks on the Franchise Times Scoreboard, as China volatility and an oil drop got investors wary about the future.
Big winners included franchisee Carrols Restaurant Group, where share prices grew by 53 percent from $7.63 to $11.74, and franchisor ServiceMaster, which jumped 46 percent from $26.77 to $39.24.
Some higher-dollar stocks also grew significantly. McDonald’s saw 26 percent growth through 2015 with the addition of all-day breakfast, rising from $93.70 to $118.14.
Panera Bread and Buffalo Wild Wings both reinvested significantly in 2015, but show investors’ preference for technology and asset-light growth models. Panera share prices grew 11 percent to $194 as it rolled out the Panera 2.0 platform. Buffalo Wild Wings, however, saw share prices shrink by 11 percent to $159.65 as investors grappled with the $160-million buyout of a 41-unit franchisee.
Market turmoil hit recent IPOs especially hard. Investors moved to safer havens, away from the companies with little public operating history. Planet Fitness shed 15 percent of share value to land at $15.63, and Bojangles shed 16 percent, ending the year at $15.87. Wingstop sank by 25 percent, ending the year at $22.81. The only IPO winner was Del Taco, which bumped up a slim 1.43 percent to end the year at $10.65 after a March reverse merger brought the company public.
The market was not kind to Noodles & Company, which shed 63 percent of share value, dropping from $26.35 to $9.69. Famous Dave’s was hammered as well, shedding 73 percent, falling from $26.27 to $6.94. Then the real volatility hit in February—see the numbers below for details.