Yum! Brands vs. Restaurant Brands International: Which Is the Better Dividend Stock?

The fast-food industry is a fruitful hunting ground for dividend investors, as many of these companies are strong, well-established businesses with resilient earnings that can weather difficult economic environments.

Restaurant Brands International (QSR -1.25%) and Yum! Brands (YUM -0.32%) are among the top five largest restaurant operators worldwide, and operate diversified portfolios of restaurant concepts. They operate a franchise-based business model that allows them to collect upfront franchise fees from new franchise owners as well as recurring royalty payments based on franchise revenue.

Both of these dividend payers are solid choices for dividend-growth investors and dividend investors in general. But which of these fast-food empires is the better buy for dividend investors going forward?

Two friends eat burgers and fries at a fast food restaurant.

Image source: Getty Images.

Meet the contestants

As a brief introduction, both Yum! Brands and Restaurant Brands operate diversified portfolios of restaurant concepts worldwide. Interestingly, they both feature three well-established, well-known concepts along with a newer and smaller recent addition to their lineups.

For Restaurant Brands, Burger King, Tim Hortons, and Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen are the mainstays, and Firehouse Subs is the newcomer in its portfolio. For Yum! Brands, KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken), Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell are the stalls, and Habit Burger is the new addition to the roster.

Restaurant Brands currently operates about 29,000 locations across 100 countries worldwide, while Yum! The brand is nearly twice its size, with more than 53,000 restaurants in 155 countries.

Dividend growth at the drive-thru

Yum! Brands have been a solid dividend stock over the

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