January 29, 2014

McDonald’s Seeks to Out-Latte Starbucks

“McDonald’s is trying to look and feel more like Starbucks,” said Howard Penney, 
managing director at Hedgeye Risk Management LLC, who has covered the industry 
for 20 years. “It’s actually hurting them, not helping them” because the chain’s 
competitive advantage is food not beverages and because making complicated coffee 
drinks slows down service.

McDonald’s Seeks to Out-Latte Starbucks in Coffee War - Bloomberg:


How McDonald’s Overloaded Its Menu

How McDonald’s Overloaded Its Menu | βurgerβusiness


January 28, 2014

Golden Arches

Franchise Times magazine’s February issue contains an article about McDonald’s.
It’s not yet on their web site so I can’t link it but one of the sidebars contains
some sales history that’s interesting to look back on:

In 1997 McDonald’s AUV was $1.4 million
In 2013 McDonald’s AUV was  $2.7 million

In 1997 Burger King’s AUV was $1.08 million
In 2013 Burger king’s AUV was $1.3 million

In 1997 Wendy’s AUV was $1.04 million
In 2013 Wendy’s AUV was $1.5 million

A Wall Street analyst is quoted:

“In a business where McDonald’s has been as successful as it has, at the volumes
it has, $ 2.7 million, it makes it incrementally harder to drive sales. They’re a 
little bit of a victim of their own success.”

McDonald’s Worker to Attend State of the Union Address

McDonald’s Worker to Attend State of the Union Address - 24/7 Wall St.

January 27, 2014

Cashing In

On January 24th McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson exercised his option on 30,000 
McDonald’s shares at a price of $26.63 per share. He sold all 30,000 shares on 
the same day at $95.07 per share for a net of $2,053,200.


January 22, 2014

Which Comes First?

Do you have to already be delusional to work for a huge bureaucracy or does one
become delusional trying to adapt to the corporate culture?
In this article John Betts, President of McDonald’s Canada, tries to make the case
for the Canadian version of the high density menu. The logic is pretty confused.
Many will remember that Betts was General Manager in the Michigan Region when
that state tested the original McCafe platform. If he had been honest with McDonald's
Operators about how poorly espresso based drinks did in testing he could have saved
the U.S. system billions in unnecessary equipment purchases and additional billions 
in wasted advertising spends.
And now OPNAD is going after espresso again? Not only is that a waste of Operator’s
money but it won’t build sales, as proven every time it’s been tried.

McDonald's Canada's Road to Redemption


McDonald's Names CMO

McDonald's names new chief marketing officer for U.S. - Crains

Is This the Future of Fast Food? | βurgerβusiness

Is This the Future of Fast Food? | βurgerβusiness

Dining-Out Inflation Outpaces Food Cost Rise

Dining-Out Inflation Outpaces Food Cost Rise | βurgerβusiness
: 59¢ Hamburgers & 79¢ Cheeseburgers ALL DAY! *At participating McDs.

Bill Gates On Raising The Minimum Wage

This Was Not The Answer MSNBC Host Anticipated From Bill Gates About Raising The Minimum Wage | Independent Journal Review

January 13, 2014

Bright Ideas From Canada?

McDonald’s Operators have asked, “Who is this Richard Ellis person  mentioned in Don Thompson’s New Year letter"?

Richard Ellis was at the center of one of the past decade's most embarrassing events for McDonald’s USA.

In 2008 it became publicly known that McDonald’s Corp. had placed VP Richard Ellis on
the Board of Directors of the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commence (NGLCC).
In addition McDonald’s was making monetary contributions to the group.

This caught the attention of family advocacy groups who launched a boycott of their local McDonald’s which generated substantial publicity and in certain parts of the country 
hurt sales and the brand's local image. This of course caused an uproar among 
McDonald's Operators.

Once Oak Brook saw the error of their ways they pulled Ellis from the NGLCC board and suddenly realized he was desperately needed in Canada. The boycotts were ended and 
lessons were learned. 

But now, for 2014, he seems to be the person with all the answers. 

Here’s a little history from 2008