labels: Stock markets - world, Foods / beverages, World economy
McDonald's beats trend; sales up in April news
09 May 2009

McDonald's, the world's largest chain of fast-food restaurants reported strong sales both in the US and overseas in April, even as recession has started to eat away share and revenues from some major fast-food restaurants.

Illinois-based, McDonald's said yesterday that global sales at restaurants wholly owned by it and open at least 13 months, rose 6.9 per cent in April, marking the 72nd consecutive monthly.

In the US, the ongoing appeal of McDonald's core menu, beverages including the new McCafe coffees and chicken Snack Wraps contributed to April comparable sales rising 6.1 per cent.

McCafé, a concept first started by McDonald's in Melbourne, Australia in 1993, showed good performance at the 14,000 locations in the US in April riding on the wave of a $100 million marketing campaign promoting the café in TV, radio, print, online and outdoor ads.

Europe delivered strong comparable sales growth of 8.4 per cent for the month, partly due to the benefit of the Easter holiday shift.

The UK led Europe's performance, where customers loved the tiered menu offerings, as well as the popular Monopoly sweepstake promotion. France, Russia and Germany also posted positive comparable sales.

In Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa, April comparable sales increased 6.5 per cent driven by Australia and Japan, partly offset by China.

In this region, locally relevant menu choices, everyday affordability and extended hours contributed to April's performance.

Since a stronger dollar, lowers the dollar-value of overseas sales, McDonald's said system-wide sales at its restaurants, which includes franchisees worldwide, declined 1.0 per cent for the month, but increased 8.9 per cent in constant currencies.

The global recession, although has taken the wind away from the expensive sit-in restaurants, fast-food restaurants had been faring much better, but of late, even the fast-food restaurants and take-aways are feeling the impact of global economic downturn.

For the first time since 2003, the US fast-food industry recorded its first quarterly sales decline, where sales have continued to decline for the past two months at Burger King Wendy's/Arby's, and the drive-in fast-food chain Sonic.

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McDonald's beats trend; sales up in April