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McDonald’s: Sometimes big price differences depending on the branch

McDonald’s: Sometimes big price differences depending on the branch
MC Donalds
Image: (Reuters)

The group only gives franchisees non-binding price recommendations, a spokesman emphasized to the APA, after an online search for the McDelivery “home office menu” showed differences of almost 55 percent – a range between 12.20 and 18.90 euros. A look at competitor Burger King in Germany offers some insight into the pricing of the fast food giants.

With the current price range example “Home Office Menu” around 12.20 to 18.90 euros, the fast food giant’s recommended retail price is “roughly in the middle of this price range,” according to the group’s Austrian spokesman. He emphasized: “For the most part, our price recommendation is also implemented, but as you can see, there are also occasionally other price settings – both cheaper and more expensive.”

Price targets are also subject to antitrust reservations. Potential price differences by branch also exist for individual products – not just for menus when ordering.

McDonald’s: 90 percent franchised

“In general, we are also feeling the increasing pressure on prices – from raw material prices to energy costs and packaging costs,” the spokesman continued. They don’t want to pass on these increases one-to-one. But: “However, price adjustments are possible,” it said, pointing out that franchisees are “completely free to set their prices.” 90 percent of the bars in Austria are operated by licensees.

Burger King: Veggie dishes cheaper

A look across the border to the north shows that McDonald’s major competitor Burger King recently made a purely strategic pricing decision. The dpa-AFX agency recently reported that price reductions for veggie dishes are fueling competition for market share in the industry. Plant-based products are each offered ten cents cheaper than comparable meat-based products. “We want to encourage more guests to try out whether they like plant-based food,” said managing director Jörg Ehmer on Tuesday.

The economic calculation at Burger King is not based on the profit margin of the individual dish, but on the assumption that more guests will come. “This has nothing to do with price calculation. It’s not about optimizing profits, but rather about sending a clear signal,” said Ehmer. Burger King does not provide specific figures for sales of meat and non-meat products.

At the end of last year, Burger King Germany operated 145 restaurants on its own account. 610 were run by franchisees. The majority shareholder is the US investor company McWin Capital Partners.

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