Industry News | August 8, 2017 | By Danny Klein | QSR Exclusive Brief

McDonald’s to Nearly Double China Stores by 2022

McDonald's is growing in China. flickr: Mike Mozart
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McDonald’s is making a significant push in the world’s No. 2 economy. The company announced Tuesday it plans to nearly double its footprint in Mainland China by 2022, increasing the number of restaurants from 2,500 to 4,500.

READ MORE: Why McDonald's topped this year's QSR 50 (again).

McDonald’s agreed to sell most of its China and Hong Kong business to CITIC Ltd and Carlyle Group earlier in the year for $2.1 billion. Originally, the deal called for 1,500 new units in next five years. CITIC owns 52 percent and Carlyle 28 percent.

"China will soon become our largest market outside of the United States. We are excited to join forces with CITIC and Carlyle for better localized decision-making to meet changing customer demands in this dynamic market," Steve Easterbrook, McDonald's chief executive, told Reuters.

Reuters is reporting that McDonald’s strategy includes opening more restaurants in lower-tier Chinese cities, as well as boosted delivery and a “digitalized and personalized” dining experience.

"China and Hong Kong represent an enormous growth opportunity for McDonald's," Easterbrook said in January. "This new partnership will combine one of the world's most powerful brands and our unparalleled quality standards with partners who have an unmatched understanding of the local markets and bring enhanced capabilities and new partnerships, all with a proven record of success."