Yum! Brands names new director, authorizes buyback

AP News
Posted: Nov 18, 2011 5:57 PM
Yum! Brands names new director, authorizes buyback

Fast food chain operator Yum! Brands Inc. said Friday that pharmaceutical executive Mirian M. Graddick-Weir was appointed to its board of directors. The company also authorized a $750 million share buyback and announced a dividend payment.

Graddick-Weir, 56, will take her seat on the board at the company's next board meeting on Jan. 26. She is executive vice president of human resources at Merck & Co., based in Whitehouse Station, N.J.

Yum's board authorized the repurchase of up to an additional $750 million of the company's shares through May 31, 2013. The company said there was about $250 million remaining under an existing share-buyback authorization as of Nov. 11.

The board also declared a quarterly dividend of 28.5 cents a share to be paid Feb. 3 to shareholders of record on Jan. 13. Yum said in September that it would raise its dividend by 14 percent, to 28.5 cents a share. The company has increased its dividend every year since it began paying them in 2004.

Yum! Brands, based in Louisville, Ky., operates about 37,000 fast-food restaurants in the U.S. and more than 100 other countries. Its brands include KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.

Shares of the company rose 7 cents to close at $53.84.