February 26, 2015

Rumor About MCOPCO

We've had comments here plus E-mails about a rumor (repeat - rumor) concerning the
threat that MCOPCO might follow Wall-Mart's lead and very publicly raise wages in the
U.S. stores. The idea being to put pressure on McDonald's Operators causing a round of
price increases which would end up raising income to McDonald's Corp.

There are arguments for and against this rumored move:

Against - MCOPCO margins have been declining for several years, raising wages would
make matters worse.

Against - Oak Brook needs to protect Operator cash flow in order to continue re-imaging,
new technologies, and the build-a-burger project.

For - McDonald's shareholders have benefited from the inflation created by increases in
the minimum wage for decades.

For - With new leadership heavily influenced by a European social agenda (quasi-socialist)
management might be eager to impress the world with more benefits for “workers”.

One thing is for sure – $1.00 menu items would have to go – if core menu prices go any
higher the Dollar Menu & More will be the only thing being sold at a McDonald's.

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McDonald's & Real Estate

Why McDonald's won't ever get rid of its real estate - NRN
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Slower Growth in New McDonald's Stores

McDonald's details pullback on restaurant openings - Chicago Tribune
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Wednesday - MCD - One of its Biggest Rallies in 5 Years

Chart from CNBC


McDonald's shares are up 11% since the change in CEOs was announced. Next week we'll 
learn of another round of sales by McDonald's insiders on Weds. and Thurs. of this week.


McDonald's jumps in one of its biggest rallies in past five years - Yahoo Finance
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Higher Pay at McDonald's?

McDonald's says higher wages could slam its profit - Fortune
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February 21, 2015

Minimum Wage Hurts Low Income Folks - Who Knew?

An academic's view for those who love numbers...

The Minimum - Wage Stealth Tax on the Poor - WSJ
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Thinking About OPNAD

With all the changes going on in McDonald's in addition to the revolution in media 
and advertising this might be a good time for McDonald's Operators to do some 
thinking about OPNAD.

OPNAD was formed in 1967 when gas was 33¢ a gallon, a fully loaded Mustang fast

back was $3,000, Elvis had not yet begun his comeback, and Super Bowl One had
just been played.

So before OPNAD joins the AARP McDonald's Operators might ask hard questions:

* Is OPNAD still relevant?

* Does OPNAD have anything to do with my franchise agreement(s)?

* Is an OPNAD pledge binding?

* With the changing media landscape is a huge national spend necessary?
   Or does it just give Oak Brook control over the message/agenda?

* Does OPNAD represent the interests of its contributors?

I know one thing about OPNAD - McDonald's shareholders count mightily on OPNAD 

to protect their investment in the system. The typical McDonald's investor knows little 
about OPNAD except they assume McDonald's Operators are legally obligated by their franchise agreements to contribute to OPNAD.

And management leaves investors with the impression that all advertising decisions and stewardship of the advertising budget come from Oak Brook. It's the same way manage -

ment lets investors believe that Oak Brook makes all menu pricing decisions.

Since I don't follow OPNAD discussions and meetings I would be unaware of substantial changes to OPNAD that are already moving forward.

The next two weeks are a perfect time to ask such questions. 

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February 19, 2015

What Will Become of Build-A-Burger?

Many McDonald's watchers are asking if the new CEO will move forward with CYT or 
stop it in its tracks. He has about two weeks to make that call. If he doesn't kill it or substantially slow it down in the first week of March - he owns it.

And he could get away with it at this time, Wall Street might applaud the decision. 

The failure of the test would go on his predecessor's record. If he waits six months 
after putting more resources behind it - the test will be his failure.

What do McDonald's Operators think? Or do Operators know enough about the test 

to have an opinion?
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The Feds Have Been Wrong About Food for 3 Decades

Opinion Journal: Government Food Pyramid Crumbles - Video
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California Demands "Fair Scheduling"

California state lawmakers introduce ‘fair scheduling’ bill - NRN
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February 15, 2015

Panera Off to a Slow Start With Panera 2.0

QSR Operators should keep an eye on Panera - they are out front on many things
digital and have hit some speed bumps.

"Among other things, Panera said it is scheduling extra staff to handle the additional 
work created by digital and custom orders. That extra labor increases costs at a time 
when restaurant margins already are feeling the pinch of minimum wage increases 
and other expenses."

Panera reveals progress on efforts to boost speed, shares drop
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February 12, 2015

Cashing In - Oak Brook Style

Between January 29th and February 8th six officers of McDonald's Corporation sold over 47,400 shares of McDonald's for a total value of over $4,400,000.00.

This was not all profit as most of the transactions involved the exercise of stock options and 

as yet the option purchase price is not reported on all transactions. A good estimate would 
be the option purchase price was $35.00 to $40.00 a share. The average share price at the 
time of exercise and sale was about $93.00.

Don Thompson was the big winner exercising his option on 25,299 shares at $32.60 a share 

and immediately selling them at $92.66. for a profit over $1.5 million.

Maybe Don's going to buy a McDonald's franchise?


Source: Yahoo Finance and Edger-Online HERE

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How Easterbrook Can Fix McDonald's

New McDonalds CEO Faces Tough Fast Food Battle Ahead - QSR magazine
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February 10, 2015

Mike Andres and McDonald's - Some History

I've found that a number of McDonald's Operators don't know how the new USA
president got started in McDonald's. His father is Whitey Andres, the chief pilot
for McDonald's Corp. in the 1970s and early 1980s. 

Whitey retired to become a McDonald's Operator opening a store in Mammoth 
Lakes, CA in late 1983. Working in the store were his two sons, Russell and Mike.

As I was busy running my own stores I don't know when Whitey sold the store but 
do know that Russell became a McDonald's Operator in Los Angeles and Mike some
how ended up working for the company. He left McDonald's for a few years to serve
as CEO of Logan's Roadhouse, a 260 unit restaurant chain.

The following NRN article was published a few months after Andres left Logan's to 
be rehired by McDonald's.
 
Logan’s Roadhouse restaurant looks to cut costs - NRN
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The Life and Carrer of Don Thompson

Chicago Magazine goes in depth. This is an extensive article, printed to 12 pages.

McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson - Chicago magazine
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February 3, 2015

Does This Make Anyone Else Uncomfortable?

Smile Dude, You're getting free food!

Say I'm the next person in line to be served by
this crew person who high-fived, fist-bumped, 
or shook hands with a customer(s). Will she or
he wash their hands before handling my food?

Am I being too much of a germaphobe?

There's a lot of cute activity being pictured on 
social media but is physical contact with a bunch
of customers an appropriate activity in a food
service environment?

Wendy's to Re-franchise 500 stores

It's amazing how few restaurant companies want to be in the restaurant business.
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Shake Shack next door to Burger King - Business Insider

A reporter (and his phone) compare a Burger King and a 
Shake Shack.

Shake Shack next door to Burger King - Business Insider
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