In the year 1940, brothers Mac and Dick McDonald started the first McDonalds restaurant which was in San Bernardino. It’s theme was Barbecue, but with time they changed it’s focus towards Hamburgers, milkshakes and french fries in the year 1948. Their burgers were half the price of other competing diners.
On a sales trip in 1954 Ray Kroc, the milkshake maker salesman met McDonald Brothers. He got influenced by their way of working and hence he convinced the brothers to sell the McDonalds franchisee for $950 each, with a cut of 0.5% of sales for Ray. In the year 1955 he started his first Franchisee in Des Plaines, Illinois.
Finally in the year 1956, McDonalds began its true financial turnaround with Harry Sonneborn who started their real estate arm, franchise realty corporation. At a markup of 20% to 40% FRC purchased store sites and leased it back to franchisees. This was the mechanism that helped make money for McDonalds corporation.
In 1961, The problems with McDonalds brother persisted, which prompted Kroc to buy the brand along with the entire business for $2.7 million. He financed all of this amount from a money manager in New York.
McD started its marketing to families and children in 1963. The very familiar items in the menu such as Happy meal, Quarter Pounder, EggMcMuffin, Big Mac and Filet-O-Fish were introduced in 60s and 70s. Now in the year 1967, McDonalds opened its first International franchisee in Canada. This was further followed by Asia, Latin America, Europe and Australia in the early 1970’s. By the end of the year 1972 McD had a turnover of $1 Billion and had opened more than 2200 restaurants around the world. The 3000th restaurant was inaugurated in a short time in 1974.
Now this is how the very famous McDonalds came into existence and is now serving more than 54 Million customers a day in 120 countries with almost 31000 restaurants worldwide. In 2008 the revenue they earned was $22.8 billion