McDonald’s US admits it “shamelessly” stole from its Aussie arm

By Nick Hall | 03 May 2019 View comments

McDonald’s US has admitted to “shamelessly” stealing from its Aussie arm in an effort to replicate little brother’s success.

Presenting the group’s Q1 results, McDonald’s Corporation CEO Steve Easterbrook outlined how following trends down under had bolstered US figures.

“Today more customers are using our global mobile app and McDelivery to order delicious McDonald’s food on their terms and an increasing number of customers are choosing to use our self-order kiosks to place their orders,” Easterbrook said in a conference call.

Kiosk ordering systems have been spearheaded by the McDonald’s Australian operation, similar to profit-boosting offering updates such as McCafe.

McDonald’s Global Results

The McDonald’s Corporation CEO went on to announce a positive global result for the group, however acknowledged economic uncertainty had played a role.

“Global comparable sales increased 5.4 per cent. That’s over $1bn of growth across the system for the quarter,” Easterbrook said.

“This marks our 15th consecutive quarter of positive global comp sales despite some of the continuing macroeconomic uncertainties around the world.”

Additionally, McDonald’s reported systemwide sales increased 6 per cent in constant currencies, while consolidated operating income decreased 2 per cent.

Despite the encouraging results, Easterbrook revealed that McDonald’s US still had a way to go to catch the Australian chapter.

McDonald’s US praises Australian innovations

The McDonald’s chief commended the Australian arm on its early adoption of new market innovations such UberEats. The innovations have led to greater market share in the domestic market, prompting the US team to follow suit.

“The Australia team has more than doubled McDelivery awareness through our strong partnership with UberEats,” Easterbrook said.

“I visited Sydney and Melbourne last month and continue to be impressed with how the team is successfully driving growth across all dayparts. The market has now grown comparable sales for the past 20 consecutive quarters.”

Easterbrook also revealed that McDonald’s Australia’s experimentation with menu offering was something he had attempted to replicate. The CEO even went so far as to divulge that McDonald’s US had borrowed from its Aussie neighbours.

“The US market even stole shamelessly from our friends in Australia by introducing cheesy bacon fries,” he said.

“This kind of smart menu innovation is a great example of how we’re able to surprise and delight our customers whilst balancing their demands for speed of service with the complexity of operating at the scale of McDonald’s.”

McDonald’s Australia’s continued innovation

The international praise comes just days after the Australian chain announced the launch of its Property Graduate Program.

The two-year initiative allows graduates will work alongside industry professionals in on-the-job training and practical workshops. Participants will then be given the chance to take up a permanent role within Macca’s.

A series of multi-disciplinary program and training structures will continue to feature in the group’s plans for the future, headlined by a $500m expansion splurge reported earlier this year.

Globally, McDonald’s has more than 38,000 locations in over 100 countries, including 984 restaurants and five corporate offices in Australia.

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