Popeyes Stock: 4 Top Ways to Invest in Fast Food

How Can You Invest in Popeyes Stock

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is no longer a publicly traded company. Instead, Popeyes has been a subsidiary of Restaurant Brands International (NYSE: QSR) since 2017. Popeyes traded on the NASDAQ under the ticker symbol PLKI between 2008 and 2017. Popeyes stock was popular with investors because of its high returns.

Popeyes Stock

Popeyes stock is not available to buy on any stock exchange. You can invest in Popeyes by buying shares in Restaurant Brands International (Ticker: QSR), the parent company owning 100% of Popeyes stock.

You invest in Popeyes by buying Restaurant Brands International (QSR) stock. Popeyes is a Cajun-themed fast food chain popular because of its tasty chicken.

Popeyes Stock: The Truth About How to Invest In Popeyes Stock

Note: This is an unbiased research report. The author or Liberated Stock Trader is not affiliated, paid by, or owns stock in any of the companies mentioned in this report. 

Popeyes Stock Price

Popeyes does not have a stock price because it is not publicly traded. You can invest in Popeyes by buying shares in its parent company, Restaurant Brands International (Ticker: QSR) on the NYSE.

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Popeyes Stock Symbol

Popeyes does not have a stock symbol because the company is not available to buy on any stock exchange. The stock ticker symbol for Popeyes is QSR because Restaurant Brands International purchased Popeyes in 2017.

From 2008 to 2017, Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen stock traded under the stock symbol PLKI. This stock symbol/ticker is no longer on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) because it is no longer a publicly traded entity, having been absorbed into the Restaurant Brands International (NYSE: QSR) family of companies.

Who owns Popeyes?

Restaurant Brands International (QSR) owns 100% of Popeyes stock. QSR is a holding company formed by the 2014 merger between Burger King and Tim Horton’s.

Popeyes stock is wholly owned by Restaurant Brands, whose subsidiaries include Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Burger King, and Tim Horton’s.

Burger King is the second-largest hamburger chain in the world. Restaurant Brands claims Burger King operates over 17,800 locations in over 100 countries. Burger King is famous for its flame-broiled burgers and trademark Whopper burger.

Burger King has no corporate-owned restaurant locations. Franchisees own and operate all Burger King locations.

Tim Horton’s is North America’s second-largest coffee shop chain after Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX). Tim Horton’s is known for donuts, fresh baked goods, sandwiches, soup, and chili. Legendary Canadian hockey player Tim Horton and their partner Jim Charade founded Tim Horton’s in Hamilton, Ontario 1964.

Restaurant Brands claims Tim Horton’s operates over 4,800 stores in Canada, the United States, and other countries. Tim Hortons is Canada’s largest fast-food chain.

5 Alternatives to Popeyes Stock

Restaurant Brands International is the fifth-largest fast-food operator in the world. Restaurant Brands’ headquarters are in Toronto, but Popeyes and Burger King are headquartered in Miami. The Brazilian Investment company 3G Capital owns 51% of Restaurant Brands International.

1. Restaurant Brands International (NYSE: QSR)

Restaurant Brands make money from their franchises. Stock Rover reports that Restaurant Brands’ revenue growth fell because many work from home. Those people do not go to Popeyes, Tim Horton’s, or Burger King for lunch.

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Restaurant Brands is a diversified company. It operates four different brands, each selling a different menu. This means Restaurant Brands can keep making money if tastes change. If people stop buying burgers, they could buy submarine sandwiches from Firehouse Subs or chicken from Popeye’s.

Restaurant Brands further diversifies its operations by selling coffee through Tim Horton’s. Tim Horton’s is the fifth largest coffee shop chain in the United States, with 626 locations in 10 states. The largest coffee shop chain, Starbucks (SBUX), had 51,836 US locations in 2022.

Diversification protects Restaurant Brands from a changing market and all the aggressive competition in the burger segment. Diversifying allows Restaurant Brands to tap different markets. It caters to upscale customers through Firehouse Subs, coffee drinkers with Tim Horton’s, chicken lovers with Popeye’s, and working-class diners with Burger King.

Another value proposition at Restaurant Brands is its ability to sell cheap food. This allows Restaurant Brands to profit in a poor economy because people still need to eat and hate to cook in terrible times. There are also many situations where people need to save money but cannot cook.

In good times, people have extra cash for Whoppers, onion rings, Popeye’s Chicken, Tim Horton coffee and donuts, and Firehouse Subs. Restaurant Brands is a company that thrives in any economy.

2. Yum! Brands (NYSE: YUM)

Other companies are poised to cash in on the same trends as Restaurant Brands International (QSR).

See the Yum Brands Chart Live

Yum Brands! (YUM) operates four fast-food chains. Yum! It owns three of the world’s largest and best-known fast-food brands: Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell. Yum also owns a newer hamburger chain they call The Habit Burger Grill.

Kentucky Fried Chicken operates over 23,000 restaurants in over 135 countries. Pizza Hut operates over 18,000 pizzerias in over 100 countries. Taco Bell operates 350 franchise organizations and over 7,000 restaurants in almost 30 countries. The Habit Burger Grill operates almost 300 hamburger restaurants in China and the United States.

Yum! Brands do not own the rights to KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut in China. Another company they call Yum China Holdings (NYSE: YUMC) owns those restaurants.

Yum! Brands are struggling to attract customers in the United States. Many Americans prefer higher quality fast food, such as Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) and Chick-fil-A, to Yum’s products. Taco Bell and KFC have reputations for selling cheap, low-quality food for working-class people in the United States.

Yum! Brands are trying to capitalize on the quality burger fad with the Habit Burger Grill. Some investors think Yum! is recession-resistant because it operates in many countries.

Yum! Brands is a growing company, according to Stock Rover.

Stock Rover Growth Rankings Stock Industry S&P 500
Growth Score 81 67 76
Sales Growth Next Year 5.8% 8.8% 5.9%
Sales 1‑Year Chg (%) 2.0% 41.3% 0.5%
Sales 3‑Year Avg (%) 6.2% 4.6% 13.3%
Sales 5‑Year Avg (%) 2.7% 3.2% 11.9%

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There is a growing middle-class market for fast food in China. McKinsey & Company estimates China’s middle class will grow to 600 million in 2024. That means China’s Middle Class could be one and a half times larger than the US population. The United States had a population of around 331 million.

Overall, China’s Middle Class grew from 29 million in 1999 to 531 million in 2019, McKinsey & Company estimates. That means 39% of China’s population is now part of the middle class and has money to spend on fast food.

People looking for a fast-food stock that makes money but has enormous growth potential need to examine Yum! China.

3. Invest in Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ: SBUX)

Starbucks (SBUX) operated 31,256 coffee shops worldwide in 2022, Statista estimates. Starbucks is different from most fast-food brands because it owns a large percentage of its coffee shops.

Starbucks owned all 3,521 of its Chinese coffee shops and 8,591 American locations in 2022, 1,286 stores in Japan, 1,109 Canadian stores, 653 stores in the United Kingdom, and 352 stores in Thailand in 2023.

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The advantage of owning the stores is that Starbucks gets all the revenue from those coffee shops. Another advantage is that the Starbucks Corporation can borrow against the shops when it needs cash.

The disadvantage is that Starbucks takes all the risks store ownership creates. Another disadvantage is that Starbucks has to pay the employees and cover all the expenses for the stores.

Owning the stores allows Starbucks to maintain control and enforce high quality and customer service standards. Firing a lazy or incompetent manager is easy. Getting rid of a bad franchisee can be expensive and difficult.

Starbucks is successful because of the high quality of its coffee. Starbucks is a middle-class brand that prospers in countries with large middle classes. Starbucks’ main markets include China, which had a middle class of 531 million people in 2019.

Starbucks is a cash-rich company with $4.195 billion in cash and short-term investments.

Starbucks is a good company because it has diversified operations in several countries. Starbucks is a diversified investment because it has large footprints in China and the United States. Starbucks can make money if China grows, but it can also profit from an American renaissance.

Starbucks’ risk is that its coffee shops need many people working away from home to make money. When many people work from home, they make coffee, which limits Starbucks’ customer base.

Starbucks can adapt to this situation by adding drive-through facilities to its restaurants and offering delivery. Such changes will be expensive. One way for Starbucks to adapt is to offer its coffee through grocery delivery services such as Instagram. Another is to combine the delivery of its coffee with food from other restaurants such as McDonald’s (MCD).

The problem at Starbucks is that it concentrates on one area of the quick-service sector. That leaves Starbucks vulnerable to catastrophes such as coronavirus.

4. McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD)

McDonald’s (MCD) is the world’s most famous burger chain, with over 38,000 locations in 118 countries and territories worldwide.

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McDonald’s has a worldwide brand value of $154.9 billion and operates 40,031 restaurants worldwide.

Over 69 million people worldwide eat at McDonald’s daily, and McDonald’s sells 3.29 billion pounds of French fries yearly.

Many investors like McDonald’s because of its revenues. Stock Rover estimates McDonald’s revenues grew by 40% between 2020 and 2024.

International markets are the principal source of McDonald’s revenues. Stock Rover reports show international markets generated 54% of McDonald’s revenues in 2022. The United States was the second largest source of McDonald’s revenues, contributing 41% in 2021. Around 9% of McDonald’s revenues came from international developmental licensed markets in 2021.

Stock Rover Quality Rankings for McDonald’s 2023

Profitability Stock Industry S&P 500
Quality Score 84 56 76
Gross Margin 56.1% 32.8% 29.8%
Operating Margin 43.7% 13.5% 14.6%
Net Margin 25.4% 8.0% 11.1%
Return on Assets 12.2% 10.9% 8.0%
Return on Equity -90.0% -101.7% 33.8%
ROIC 17.4% 18.1% 19.7%


Stock Rover Rankings: McDonald’s vs. Competitors 2023

Ticker Company Cap ($M) P/E Change (%)
MCD McDonald’s $200,369 34.5 -0.2%
SBUX Starbucks $123,118 37.9 0.5%
CMG Chipotle… $43,354 54.5 0.8%
YUM Yum Brands $36,912 29.8 0.5%
YUMC Yum China… $24,404 29.0 2.1%

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McDonald’s is a popular dividend stock. Its management has scheduled eight quarterly $1.52 dividends between March 15, 2023, and October 11, 2024. Dividend.com estimates McDonald’s was offering a $6.08 forward dividend in January 2023.

The value propositions at McDonald’s include the powerful brand, the large revenues, and the dividends.

People always need to eat, and McDonald’s has a reputation for selling cheap, good food. This lets McDonald’s thrive in good times when people can afford Big Macs and in poor economies when consumers need to grab a cheap meal.

In recent years, McDonald’s has been struggling in North America, facing stiff competition from many fast-food chains. McDonald’s has closed stores in North America. McDonald’s closed around 200 stores in North American Walmart (WMT) supercenters.

The McDonald’s locations are closing because there is less demand for burgers. Walmart is replacing McDonald’s with Taco Bell, Domino’s Pizza, and Charley’s Philly Steaks stores.

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The Future of Fast Food

Fast food and quick-service restaurant stocks are still good investments. The market for fast food is growing, but it is undergoing enormous changes. Investors need to understand that some fast-food restaurants will collapse while others change.

Fast food is a money-making sector that investors need to be careful with.

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