December 20, 2008

McDonald’s Japan sales top historic mark

McDonald's says it likely will become the first restaurant chain in Japanese history to surpass a half-trillion yen, or $5.6 billion, in yearly sales.

Officials of McDonald's Holdings Co. Japan says sales are likely to top 500 billion yen in the 2008 business year, 37 years after the first golden arches was opened in Tokyo's Ginza district, Kyodo, the Japanese news agency, reported Saturday.

The sales figures cover some 3,754 restaurants, including outlets directly controlled by McDonald's and those at franchise shops. Kyodo says the sales figures represent a recovery by McDonald's from earlier blunders in its pricing policy for hamburgers after the early 1990s burst of the bubble economy.

Analysts say McDonald's was able to bounce back in the last decade thanks to more restaurants that operate 24 hours per day, the introduction of new items and a greater push on the marketing of coffee.