Starbucks Delays 10-Q, to Restate Some Results

Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) said Friday it would delay filing its quarterly report and would likely have to restate some prior-period financial results due to lease accounting errors.

The 10-Q report for the fiscal first quarter ended Jan. 2 will be filed with regulators by Feb. 16 and will not affect the coffee shop chain's previously reported earnings per share for the quarter or its fiscal 2005 earnings forecast, the company said in a statement.

Starbucks, which is based in Seattle, said it needs the five-day extension to address concerns raised by the Securities and Exchange Commission's (search) top accountant in a letter sent earlier this week to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (search).

In the letter, SEC Chief Accountant Donald Nicolaisen asked for more specifics from companies in financial statements about how they account for property leases, following a wave of restatements from restaurant chains.

In the past few months, restaurant chains McDonald's Corp. (MCD), Wendy's International Inc. (WEN), Darden Restaurants Inc. (DRI) and many others have announced changes to the way they account for leases.

Starbucks said it believes at this time that its current lease-related accounting methods are not consistent with views given by the SEC staff earlier this week.

"The SEC staff's views made it clear that our accounting for these items was incorrect," Starbucks Chief Financial Officer Michael Casey said in a statement.

Starbucks said the lease matters would not affect its longer-term goal of raising earnings per share by 20 percent to 25 percent annually for the next three to five years.

Starbucks shares were up 22 cents at $50.40 in morning trade on Nasdaq.