McDonald’s dashes kitchen doubts and bags best quarter in five years

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 25:  An exterior view of the world's largest McDonald's restaurant and their flagship outlet in the Olympic Park on June 25, 2012 in London, England. The restaurant, which is one of four McDonald's to be situated within the Olympic Park, will have a staff of 500. After the Olympic and Paralympic Games conclude the restaurant will be dismantled and all fixtures and fittings will be either reused or recycled.  (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Following the announcement of a major plan to bring automated ordering kiosks and mobile ordering into its stores earlier this year, which some industry observers feared could have hampered speed of service capabilities, QSR giant McDonald’s has recorded its most successful quarter in five years.

McDonald’s reported a global comparable sales increase of 6% in Q2 of 2017. Systemwide sales also saw a boost with the company recording an 8% rise in constant currency terms. In the last 12 months consolidated operating income increased by 24% and it reported comparable sales for the International Lead segment increased by 6% for the quarter, commenting that the sector was led by continued momentum in the UK.

The news comes just a few months after the fast-food behemoth announced plans to roll out automated kiosk ordering across a significant portion of its sites. It has also begun experimenting with delivery and mobile ordering. Some QSR operators fear that automated ordering can place additional pressure on kitchens and affect guest experience and speed of service.

The company is now introducing its Velocity Growth Plan accelerators in more restaurants around the world to provide customers a better service through digital and delivery schemes, indicating it is ramping up front-of-house tech which can be synced with the kitchen.

“We’re building a better McDonald’s and more customers are noticing,” said McDonald’s President and Chief Executive Officer Steve Easterbrook.

“Our relentless commitment to running great restaurants and keeping the customer at the center of everything we do is generating broad-based strength and momentum across our entire business.  For the quarter, we delivered our strongest global comparable sales and guest count results in more than five years.”

Easterbrook concluded: “Whilst we’re encouraged by our results from the first half of 2017, we’re not complacent.  Today, we’re acting like a leadership brand, taking on new challenges and opportunities and moving with a greater sense of purpose and urgency.  We’re building on our momentum, leveraging our size and scale and executing with greater precision against our priorities to retain, regain and convert customers by giving them even more reasons to visit and enjoy McDonald’s.

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