Two brothers Dick and Mac McDonald moved from New England to California to find new opportunities. Despite the failure movie business, they got huge success in the drive-in restaurants business. In 1948, they introduced their streamlined service program, which included 15 cents hamburgers. The success of the restaurant inspired the brothers to create their franchise concept.
After his second year, Ray Kroc dropped out of high school in Chicago to join the World War One Red Cross Ambulance Corps. Before his unit went overseas, the war was over, and Ray got back home. He was playing music and later was working as a paper cups seller for a living. He became the exclusive distributor of a milkshake mixing machine called the Multimixer in 1939.
In 1954, he visited the McDonald brothers and became their franchise agent. In April 1955, in Des Plaines, Illinois, he opened the first McDonald’s System, Inc. (then McDonald’s Corp.) restaurant. McDonald's System, Inc. got the rights to the brothers' company for $ 2.7 million in 1961.
McDonald's unique franchise model empowers local entrepreneurs. McDonald’s President & Chief Executive Officer, Steve Easterbrook, has a long-term plan to increase the share of franchised restaurants. He describes the benefits of franchising in his statement: “By identifying strategic partners who share our values and vision to accelerate our growth and scale across diverse markets, we will drive innovation, becoming more relevant to our customers and the communities we serve.”
The global network of McDonald’s restaurants spread in over 100 countries over the world, over 90% of restaurants belong and operated by independent Franchisees.
To be the owner of a McDonald’s restaurant is an amazing opportunity. We are looking for people with significant business experience (successful owner or manager of several business units/departments) and enough financial resources.
The company has its own international training center - Hamburger University (HU). For the needs of franchisees, we periodically revise and correct all training programs provided at HU and various local sites. All programs and training activities were developed to give franchisees certain skills in various aspects of running a McDonald's restaurant and held at regular intervals.
To be eligible to operate a McDonald’s restaurant, franchisees must complete a basic minimum core training program - the Restaurant Department Management (RDM). RDM is deployed through Campus. The campus allows franchisees to complete and track the progress of their assigned training online. To complete all RDM training programs (from Shift Manager through General Manager) it takes about 2 years.
The complete curriculum and materials include many elements. For example, franchisees must perform and master all team and management functions in the restaurant as part of the training program. An operations consultant will help the franchisee at the restaurant opening by assisting and clarifying previous training and instruction.
Before signing the Franchise Agreement or paying any money to the franchisor, franchisees must complete the training program. In addition to the RDM curriculum requirements, there are no additional mandatory training requirements for the franchisee.
The franchisor may provide permanently annual meetings, conventions, various workshops, and other training sessions to franchisees or their employees. The franchisor may charge a fee for those training sessions.
The franchisor operates Hamburger University (HU), the international training center for the McDonald's System. The content and duration of all operations courses, which are offered at HU and various local sites, are revised and reconsidered from time to time to meet the needs of the franchisees. All courses and learning events are offered at frequent intervals and are designed to give franchisees specific skill sets in the various facets of the conduct of a McDonald's restaurant.
The basic minimum core training, which franchisees must complete to be qualified to operate a McDonald’s restaurant, is known as the Restaurant Department Management (RDM) curriculum. RDM curriculum is deployed through Campus, which allows franchisees to complete and track the progress of their assigned learning online. It takes approximately two years to complete all RDM learning plans, from Shift Manager through General Manager.
The complete training program and materials include many elements. As part of the training program, franchisees must perform and master all of the crew and management functions at the restaurant. At the opening of the restaurant, an operations consultant will spend time with franchisees providing assistance and refinement of previous training and instruction.
Franchisees must complete the training program successfully before signing the Franchise Agreement or paying any money to the franchisor. There are no further mandatory training requirements for franchisees beyond the RDM curriculum.
However, annual meetings, conventions, various workshops, and other training sessions may be conducted on an ongoing basis within each region, and McDonald’s may require franchisees to pay for the costs associated with that ongoing training. Additionally, optional courses may be offered to franchisees or their employees for a fee.
How much money will I make?
We can’t guarantee specific profitability, it depends on various factors (operating and placement costs, financing conditions), but most importantly, on your ability to effectively operate the business.
Is there an opportunity to acquire more than one McDonald’s restaurant?
McDonald's is an equal opportunity franchisor. We are looking for potential franchisees who can manage multiple locations. Candidates who have successfully run multiple businesses may be suitable for running multiple McDonald's franchises.
Is McDonald’s seeking women and minority Owner/Operators?
Our company is focused on increasing the number of minority and female franchisees. And to our knowledge, we already have the largest minority and female franchisee group in our industry.
What is the availability of McDonald’s restaurants in my area?
The possibility of opening restaurants in certain areas will be discussed in the first interview. We can not say in advance of the complement of your training which restaurants will be available. For a restaurant opportunity may be required flexibility to relocate.
I have a piece of property that would be ideal for a new McDonald’s restaurant; will McDonald’s develop the site and award the franchise to me?
We separate processes of choosing an area and franchisee selection. We develop the site because we believe it will be successful. After deciding to develop a site, McDonald’s awards the most qualified candidate with the franchise. McDonald's evaluates the area, acquires property, and builds a facility. Contact us if you have a property that you want to sell.
Can you still get a McDonald’s franchise (in the United States) and how much does it cost?
At McDonald’s we are constantly looking for qualified people to become our franchisees. The minimum down payment will vary as the total cost varies from restaurant to restaurant. Typically, we need at least $ 500,000 personal net worth to consider getting a franchise. For more information on buying and financing a McDonald’s franchise, visit the U.S. franchise home page.
How can I become a non-U.S. McDonald’s franchisee?
McDonald's provides franchised restaurants in many international markets. Decisions regarding the selection of candidates are made at the local level by the leadership of the country in which the restaurant is located. Please, review the contact list and franchise information on the company's Global Franchise page to provide information on the international franchise market.