Industry News | May 29, 2002

McDonald's May Begin Offering More Than Meals

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Today's Wall Street Journal reported that McDonald's Corp. is investigating ways to further utilize its worldwide network of real estate holdings by offering non-food items at its stores.

"We need to think of ourselves as a retailer," Matthew Paull, McDonald's chief financial officer, told the Journal. "What else can we do on that real estate and that can make us a whole lot of money?" Although Paull would not further elaborate on exactly what McDonald's has in the works to that end, he did say the company is at least two years away from any major non-food product launches.

According to the Journal retail experts say there are constraints on what McDonald's can sell; there is little space to display merchandise or to store inventory. Peter Brown, chairman of Kurt Salmon Associates, say McDonald's may find success in selling, "Little things that aren't bulky and that aren't so pricey,"—watches, stamps, videos.