2015 Franchise 500
At a Glance

Products & Services: Burgers, chicken, salads, beverages

Number of Locations: 36,258

Total Investment: $1M - $2.3M

Founded: 1955

Began Franchising: 1955

About McDonald's

Ray Kroc, a milkshake mixer salesman, ventured to California in 1954 to visit McDonald's hamburger stand, where he heard they were running eight mixers at once. Kroc was impressed by how rapidly customers were served and, seeing an opportunity to sell many more milkshake machines, encouraged brothers Dick and Mac McDonald to open a chain of their restaurants. Kroc became their business partner and opened the first McDonald's in Des Plaines, Illinois in 1955. McDonald's and the Golden Arches have since become an internationally-recognized symbol of quick-service hamburgers, fries, chicken, breakfast items, salads and milkshakes.

Franchise Units

Year U.S. Canadian International Company Owned
2015 12,836 1,181 15,527 6,714
2014 12,757 1,170 15,067 6,689
2013 12,678 1,114 14,459 6,642
2012 12,605 1,152 14,125 6,598
2011 12,546 1,125 13,407 6,439
Where Seeking Franchisees: Franchisor is seeking new franchise units worldwide.

Startup Costs, Ongoing Fees and Financing

Total Investment: $1,000,708 - $2,335,146
Franchise Fee: $45,000
Term of Franchise Agreement: 20 years, renewable
Financial Requirements
Liquid Cash Available: $750,000
88% of all franchisees own more than one unit. Absentee ownership of franchise is NOT allowed. (100% of current franchisees are owner/operators).
Financing Type In-House Third Party
Franchise Fee
Startup Costs
Accounts Receivable

How This Franchise Supports Franchisees

Training: Available at headquarters: 1 week. At local McDonald's restaurant : 12-24 months.
Ongoing Support: Newsletter, Meetings, Toll-free phone line, Grand opening, Internet, Security/safety procedures, Field operations/evaluations, Purchasing cooperatives, Lease Negotiation
Marketing Support: Co-op advertising, Ad slicks, National media, Regional advertising,
Other marketing support: Restaurant-specific support

Franchise Ranking History

Franchise 500®: #14 (2015), #16 (2014), #9 (2013), #6 (2012), #3 (2011),
Fastest-Growing: #9 (2015), #19 (2014), #58 (2013), #27 (2012), #12 (2011),
America's Top Global: #5 (2014), #5 (2013), #5 (2012), #3 (2011),

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