McDonald’s wins battle of the burgers

mcdonaldsIn the battle of the burgers, McDonald’s has come out ahead of Burger King in New Zealand, although both fast-food chains lifted revenue and profit over the course of 2016.

According to their financial statements, sales at McDonald’s Restaurants NZ rose 6.5 per cent to $259.7 million in calendar 2016 while Burger King’s revenue rose 4.2 per cent to $191.5m.

McDonald’s local profit rose 47 per cent to $52.8m in 2016, while Burger King turned to a profit of $3.8m from a loss of $7.6m in 2015.

The local unit of McDonald’s introduced all-day breakfast in May 2016, a move which proved popular in the US when it was launched in October 2015, pushing sales there to the best quarter in nearly four years.

The Kiwi appetite for fast food is showing no signs of slowing, and the local fast food market is increasingly competitive, with NZX-listed Restaurant Brands, which operates KFC, Starbucks, Pizza Hut and Carl’s Jr, lifting annual sales 28 per cent to $497.2m in the latest year.

BurgerFuel Worldwide, which listed on the NZAX in 2007, had a 7 per cent gain in sales in its first half and narrowed its net loss.

The local McDonald’s division paid $30m to its US parent, unchanged from a year earlier.

The Burger King profit was its first under the ownership of US private equity firm Blackstone Group.

McDonald’s NZ spent $54.8m on its employees in 2016, up 1.2 per cent from a year earlier, while Burger King NZ spent $55.1m on salaries, up 5.3 per cent.

Both companies are currently under pressure from Unite Union, which represents fast food workers, over how they calculate annual leave for part-time workers.

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