McDonald’s sales fell by only 3.4% in the first three months of the year, despite closing all of its restaurants in the UK.
The fast food chain’s international business was hit due to closures in the UK, France, Italy and Spain, but 99% of restaurants in the US remained open, where sales only fell by 13%.
Despite the struggles from the Covid-19 pandemic, McDonald’s said it benefited from a strong start to the year, delivering strong global comparable sales results for the two months ended February 2020.
For the two month period at the start of the year, the restaurant posted an increase of sales of 7.2%, but a 22.2% decrease in sales for the month ended March 31st.
“While our January and February global comparable sales were strong, changes in consumer behaviour and the various restrictions in place by Governments around the world have led to a significant decline in sales.”
McDonald’s also revealed that comparable sales results for the quarter were primarily impacted by China, which had approximately 25% of restaurants fully closed in early February, at the peak of the company’s closures in that market.
President and CEO of McDonald’s, Chris Kempczinski, said of the results: “We entered 2020 in a strong position, but of course the world has since changed. While our January and February global comparable sales were strong, changes in consumer behaviour and the various restrictions in place by Governments around the world have led to a significant decline in sales.
“The world is going through a historic event, with profound consequences for McDonald’s, for the restaurant industry and for humanity at large. We’re learning more about this situation by the day, and over the coming weeks and months, we’ll better understand the enduring consequences it presents. But I remain confident in our future because we have the right purpose, values, and most importantly, people, to help us emerge from this challenging time with strength.”