Last month, we reported that McDonald’s was making a series of changes as they closed many of their locations across the country due to a decline in sales.
Now, McDonald’s has announced that the number of their restaurants in the U.S. is shrinking for the first time in over 40 years. For the first time since at least 1970, McDonald’s is planning to close more restaurants in the U.S. than it opens this year.
McDonad’s spokeswoman Becca Hary refused to name the exact number of restaurants that would be closing, but she did say that the reduction would be “minimal” compared to the 14,300 total locations in the U.S.
McDonald’s has been arguably the top fast food restaurant for most of it’s existence, and it’s Dollar Menu helped it to thrive during the recent recession. However, over the last few years, “healthier” chains like Chipotle and Subway have chipped away at McDonald’s business. Other chains like Five Guys have advertised “better burgers” that are higher quality than McDonald’s.
In April, McDonald’s announced that they would be closing 700 underperforming restaurants around the world. They then revealed a series of changes to their menu that would both simplify and make it healthier.
Even with the mass closings, McDonald’s still remains the country’s biggest hamburger chain by far. It still has more than twice the number of locations of Burger King, which is it’s closest competitor.
Mike Donahue, the former chief communications officer for McDonald’s, said that the public shouldn’t worry too much about the chain. According to him, they are likely just closing underperforming stores so they can open new ones in better locations, which is something they have done in the past.
“What they’re doing is pruning the tree,” he said.
What do you think about these closings? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.