McDonald's will look for growth in Asia

by Bob Sims
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McDonald's China
McDonald's aims to add 1,500 restaurants in China, Hong Kong and Korea over the next five years.

OAK BROOK, Ill. – McDonald’s Corp. announced its plan to add value and unlock growth in Asian markets by identifying strategic partners in key areas. The company will seek partnerships to help enhance competitive advantage and resources to aid localized decision making and increase capital resources for further restaurant expansion and modernization.

Steve Easterbrook, McDonald's
Steve Easterbrook, president and CEO of McDonald's

“Asia represents a significant area of opportunity for McDonald's to blend our global quality standards with local insights and expertise from partners who share our vision and values," said Steve Easterbrook, McDonald's President and CEO. "This will allow McDonald's to accelerate our growth and scale faster across diverse markets placing us closer to our customers and the communities we serve. We're in the midst of transforming our business and taking a strategic and thoughtful approach to enhance our ability to grow around the world. These actions build on our turnaround efforts and will advance local ownership, enable faster decision-making and achieve restaurant growth."

Collectively, China, Hong Kong and Korea represent over 2,800 restaurant locations, a majority of which are company-owned. Those countries fall within the McDonald’s high-growth market segment and have relatively higher franchising and expansion potential. The intent for the next five years is to add more than 1,500 restaurants to China, Hong Kong and Korea.

The company also intends to identify strategic partners in Japan and Taiwan. Last year, McDonald’s made a commitment to evaluate ownership structures in worldwide markets with the intent of reducing the number of company-owned and operated restaurants. The long-term goal is for McDonald’s to be 95 percent franchised.  

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