McDonald’s to serve food on your table in India too
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New Delhi: American quick service restaurant (QSR) chain McDonald’s Corp. has started offering table service at a few stores in western India as part of the company’s global transformation strategy, billed ‘experience the future’.
“The table service, along with inclusion of healthier products like salads and soups are part of the global plan,” said Amit Jatia, vice-chairman, Westlife Development Ltd, the parent of Hardcastle Restaurants Pvt. Ltd that operates McDonald’s restaurants in west and south India.
“We introduced the first table service in India earlier this year. This also gives us the opportunity to serve a set of consumers who do not like standing in long queues,” Jatia said.
McDonald’s introduced table service in the US in November last year.
Besides offering table service, McDonald’s global transformation strategy includes adding self-service kiosks for ordering, mobile payments and ‘smart’ menu boards at the restaurants. “The transformation is an ongoing process. We have been renovating and rebranding our stores for the past couple of years, and more than 60% of our outlets are brand new. The remaining will also be rebranded,” said Jatia.
At such McDonald’s outlets, customers can place orders using the self-service kiosks, customize their own burger before finalizing the order and skip the front counters. The food will be served at their table.
The company will add table service at all 260 McDonald’s outlets that Hardcastle operates in west and south India. Besides, it plans to add about 30 restaurants every year aiming to double its store count over the next 5-7 years, added Jatia. The company had, in September last year, said it would spend about Rs 750 crore to double store count in the next 5-7 years, Mint reported on 18 September.
The company will also double McCafes, a concept of having cafes within a McDonald’s store introduced in October 2013 in India, over the next two years. It currently has 111 McCafes in India.
The company’s same store sales growth, a key metric for the QSR industry, was 1% during the quarter ended 31 March 2017, down from 5.1% during the previous quarter. Same store sales measure growth at outlets that have been open for at least a year.
For the full year ended 31 March, Westlife Development reported a net loss of Rs 12.12 crore, up from Rs 2.83 crore in the previous year. Sales were Rs 930.78 crore in the year to 31 March, compared with Rs 833.43 crore in the previous year.