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Remodeling, Discounting Vex McDonald’s Franchisees

The latest survey of McDonald’s franchisees conducted by Janney Capital Markets analyst Mark Kalinowski offers some insight into how remodeling investments and marketing programs such as discounting are viewed by some operators. Their unease about the cash-flow impact of “re-imaging” contrasts with the standard corporate view that such investments are vital to keep brands relevant […]

Reimaging: Checkers/Rally’s Makes its Move

Checkers/Rally’s tomorrow (9/8) unveils the third of three reimaged locations it plans in Columbus, Ohio. It’s one of 10 Ohio’s Rally’s locations that are being remodeled by year-end in a test of a new exterior design. Operating under both the Checkers and Rally’s brands, depending on market, the chain is the 12th largest U.S. burger […]

Franchisee Morphs Johnny Rockets to JR’s Concept

Johnny Rockets franchisee Richard Riva has opened the first JR’s Burger Grill in Phoenix. Less a totally new concept than a reworking of a full-service Johnny Rockets to a quick-service format, the restaurant is offering a limited menu with burgers priced at $2.99. A Johnny Rockets spokesperson calls the concept “quick-service pricing with fast-casual quality.” […]

McDonald’s Investing $1 Billion in Canadian Makeover

 McDonald’s Corp. accelerated its global remodeling plan by committing $1 billion to upgrading its 1,400 restaurants in Canada by the end of 2012. The program, similar to the one underway in the U.S. and nearly completed in Europe, involves more than exterior and interior designs.   A new front-counter service platform intended to increase crew coordination and […]

Extreme Makeover: Burger King Edition

[June 1 Update: McGarryBowen wins Burger King’s U.S. ad account. Read here.] The King is dead; long live the new Burger King. The No. 2 burger chain is changing its menu, its look, its marketing and its attitude, according to a 5/30 article by Elaine Walker in the Miami Herald. The creepy King character is […]

Wendy’s: Food Costs Won’t Deter Menu Shifts

Wendy’s said it, like other restaurant chains, will need additional selective price increases this year (after taking a late-March hike) due to food costs that are rising beyond expectations. Beef costs should be up 20% this year rather than the 10%-15% rise previously forecast. Overall food prices could be up 5%-6% and not the 2%-3% […]

McDonald’s Sees Price Hikes, More Chicken


McDonald’s Corp. took a 1% menu-price increase in March and expects to make a series of small pricing adjustments on selected items through the year. In its quarterly earnings call with analysts this morning, McDonald’s executives spoke more pointedly than before about the globalization of its menu. The chain is looking at importing to the U.S. […]

Burger King Pulls Plug on Expensive, Futuristic Redesign

[Updated: Burger King says it is revising but not abandoning its 20/20 design concept. According to a company spokesperson, “Burger King Corp. believes its global 20/20 restaurant image program is the future of the Burger King brand and the company has no plans to move away from this image. … In an effort to provide franchisees with various […]

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