McDonald's International / 1st Quarter

7.5 % increase in the first quarter

The driving force behind McDonald's growth in the first quarter of 2021 is clearly its home market of the USA.
IMAGO / Future Image
The driving force behind McDonald's growth in the first quarter of 2021 is clearly its home market of the USA.

"Our global like-for-like sales, as well as total sales in the first quarter of 2021, are outperforming the first quarter of 2019 - although Corona-related restrictions remain in place in many parts of the world," McDonald's Chief Executive Officer Chris Kempczinski said in announcing the quarterly results (Q1 ending March 31, 2021).

Global like-for-like sales increased 7.5%. In contrast to the previous quarter, all segments were now in positive territory: the strongest growth was recorded by the home market USA with an increase of 13.6%.

Although the"International Operated Markets" (IOM) segment only recorded a slight increase of 0.6 %, it performed significantly better than in Q4 2020, when it was down 7.4 %. This segment includes country markets where the company itself operates all or at least some of its restaurants, including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain and the United Kingdom, among others.

The International Developmental Licensed segment reported like-for-like growth of 6.4%. Strong comparable quarterly sales were driven primarily by China and Japan. Guest numbers remained negative in all segments.

In the U.S., like-for-like sales would have benefited from growth in average receipt - across all daily segments. The company said there were also positive effects from strong national menu and marketing offerings in its home market, as well as growth in delivery and on digital platforms.
Like-for-like sales / like-for-like turnover

Existing space sales, also known as same-store sales, comparable sales or like-for-like sales, are considered by experts to be the "hard currency" of the industry. Here, changes in the system sales of all locations that have been open for at least 13 months are considered. The reference figure is the same period of the previous year.

It said IOM 's overall results were a reflection of strong like-for-like sales growth in the UK, Australian and Canadian markets on the one hand, and significantly negative developments in France and Germany on the other. The performance was impacted in many places by government-imposed Covid 19 restrictions on restaurant operations, he said.

Highlights of the first quarter from a headquarters perspective.
Highlights of the first quarter from a headquarters perspective.

"I continue to feel inspired by the resilience of our crew members, franchisees, suppliers and headquarters employees who are aligned with our values and remain true to our purpose of nourishing and nurturing communities," said Chris Kempczinski, CEO of McDonald's. "Our teams around the world are focused on executing our Accelerating the Arches strategy at the highest level - maximizing our marketing in culturally relevant ways, being committed to our Favorites in the Core Menu and redoubling our efforts in Digital, Delivery and Drive Thru to create a faster and easier customer experience.