McDonald’s – 68 million customers every day

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The oldest operating McDonald’s restaurant was the third one built, opening in 1953. It is located at 10207 Lakewood Blvd. at Florence Ave. in Downey, California

The McDonald’s Corporation is the world’s largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurants, serving around 68 million customers daily in 119 countries. Head quartered in the United States, the company began in 1940 as a barbecue restaurant operated by Richard and Maurice McDonald; in 1948 they reorganized their business as a hamburger stand using production line principles. Businessman Ray Kroc joined the company as a franchise agent in 1955. He subsequently purchased the chain from the McDonald brothers and oversaw its worldwide growth. Kroc was noted for aggressive business practices, compelling the McDonald brothers to leave the fast food industry.

McDonald’s primarily sells hamburgers, cheeseburgers, chicken, french fries, breakfast items, soft drinks, milkshakes, and desserts. In response to changing consumer tastes, the company has expanded its menu to include salads, fish, wraps, smoothies, and fruit.

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The business began in 1940, with a restaurant opened by brothers Richard and Maurice McDonald at 1398 North E Street at West 14th Street in San Bernardino, California (at 34.1255°N 117.2946°W). Their introduction of the “Speedee Service System” in 1948 furthered the principles of the modern fast-food restaurant that the White Castle hamburger chain had already put into practice more than two decades earlier. The original mascot of McDonald’s was a man with a chef’s hat on top of a hamburger shaped head whose name was “Speedee”. Speedee was eventually replaced with Ronald McDonald by 1967 when the company first filed a U.S. trademark on a clown shaped man having puffed out costume legs.

mac8McDonald’s first filed for a U.S. trademark on the name “McDonald’s” on May 4, 1961, with the description “Drive-In Restaurant Services”, which continues to be renewed through the end of December 2009. In the same year, on September 13, 1961, the company filed a logo trademark on an overlapping, double arched “M” symbol. The overlapping double arched “M” symbol logo was temporarily disfavored by September 6, 1962, when a trademark was filed for a single arch, shaped over many of the early McDonald’s restaurants in the early years. Although the “Golden Arches” appeared in various forms, the present form as a letter “M” did not appear until November 18, 1968, when the company applied for a U.S. trademark. The present corporation dates its founding to the opening of a franchised restaurant by Ray Kroc, in Des Plaines, Illinois, on April 15, 1955, the ninth McDonald’s restaurant overall. Kroc later purchased the McDonald brothers’ equity in the company and led its worldwide expansion, and the company became listed on the public stock markets in 1965. Kroc was also noted for aggressive business practices, compelling the McDonald brothers to leave the fast food industry. The McDonald brothers and Kroc feuded over control of the business, as documented in both Kroc’s autobiography and in the McDonald brothers’ autobiography. The San Bernardino store was demolished in 1976 (or 1971, according to Juan Pollo) and the site was sold to the Juan Pollo restaurant chain. It now serves as headquarters for the Juan Pollo chain, as well as a McDonald’s and Route 66 museum. With the expansion of McDonald’s into many international markets, the company has become a symbol of globalization and the spread of the American way of life. Its prominence has also made it a frequent topic of public debates about obesity, corporate ethics and consumer responsibility.

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Jim & Ronald. Looks like Jim might have eaten too many of Ronald’s burgers!

McDonald’s restaurants are found in 119 countries and territories around the world and serve 68 million customers each day. McDonald’s operates over 34,000 restaurants worldwide, employing more than 1.7 million people. The company also operates other restaurant brands, such as Piles Café.

Focusing on its core brand, McDonald’s began divesting itself of other chains it had acquired during the 1990s. The company owned a majority stake in Chipotle Mexican Grill until October 2006, when McDonald’s fully divested from Chipotle through a stock exchange. Until December 2003, it also owned Donatos Pizza. On August 27, 2007, McDonald’s sold Boston Market to Sun Capital Partners.

Notably, McDonald’s has increased shareholder dividends for 25 consecutive years,[17] making it one of the S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats. In October 2012, its monthly sales fell for the first time in nine years.

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2 Responses to McDonald’s – 68 million customers every day

  1. Phil Krause says:

    Although McDonald’s is the worlds largest chain of quick service restaurants, serving tens of millions of customers daily, food is not McDonald’s primary business. McDonald’s primary business is property, food is just incidental. Just like a successful property developer rents properties in prime locations while prices increase, McDonald’s buys properties in prime locations all over the world (118 countries) and rents them by the franchise system. More than three quarters of McDonald’s properties freeholds are owned by them while most of the rest, they own the lease. All the major cities of the world support McDonalds and they make a major effort to find new prime locations. Here in the UK, they offer a finders fee of £20,000 for each successful suitable location.

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