Template:Infobox Company McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD) is the world's largest chain of fast-food restaurants . Although McDonald's did not invent the hamburger or fast food, its name has become nearly synonymous with both. The company began in 1940 with a restaurant opened by brothers Dick and Mac McDonald, but it was their introduction of the "Speedy Service System" in 1948 that established the principles of the fast-food restaurant. However, the company today dates its "founding" to the opening of the first franchised restaurant under CEO Ray Kroc in 1955.
See the 2004 Summary Annual Report, 2004 financial report,
- Restaurants: 30,000
- 18,000 franchisees/licensees
- 8,000 company operated
- 4,000 are operated by affiliate
- Customers per day: 50,000,000
- Customers per day and store (average): 1,700
McDonald's brand is in 122 countries around the world. Thirty-thousand local locations serve 47 million customers each day. More than 70% of McDonald's restaurants around the world are owned and operated by independent, local businessmen and women.
In addition, the company operates other restaurant brands, such as [[Aroma Caf�]], Boston Market, Chipotle Mexican Grill, and has a minority stake in Pret a Manger. Until December 2003 it also owned Donatos Pizza. Revenues for 2001 were US$14.87 billion, with net income at $1.64 billion.
In North America, most McDonald's offer both counter and drive-through service, with indoor and sometimes outdoor seating. Drive-through services are offered in the rest of the world, but they are not as common � with the majority of restaurants offering counter service only. Drive-throughs often have separate stations for placing, paying for, and picking up orders, though often the latter two steps are combined.
(In early 2005, it was announced that the company was experimenting with using a call center in Fargo, North Dakota to take the drive-through orders from more than a dozen stores in Oregon and Washington states. The minimum wage in North Dakota is significantly lower than that in Oregon or Washington.)
Specially themed restaurants also exist, such as Rock-and-Roll McDonald's 50s themed restaurants. A select few McDonald's in many areas, such as suburban areas and certain cities feature large indoor or outdoor playgrounds, called McDonald's PlayPlace. These were primarily created in the 1970s and 1980s in the USA, but later internationally; much of Canada didn't have them until the mid-1990s. Older locations often retain the name Playland.
The McDonald's Corporation's business model is slightly different from that of most other fast-food chains. In addition to ordinary franchise fees, supplies, and percentage of sales, McDonald's also collects rent, partially linked to sales. As a condition of the franchise agreement, McDonald's owns the property on which most McDonald's franchises are located.
According to Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser (2001), nearly one in eight workers in the US has at some time been employed by McDonald's. The book also states that McDonald's is the largest private operator of playgrounds in the U.S., as well as the single largest purchaser of beef, pork, and potatoes.
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