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McDonald's, Happy With Breakfast Rollout, Says Value Plan Next

  • U.S. chief in memo says all-day breakfast to aid market share
  • Chain seeks to reverse seven quarters of sales declines

McDonald’s Corp., trying to revive flagging sales, is calling the rollout of all-day breakfast in the U.S. a success and telling franchisees to prepare for the next course: a national value plan.

"Regaining our dominance in value by aligning around a national value platform and the power of Opnad is the next step," Mike Andres, the restaurant chain’s U.S. president, wrote last week in an e-mail to domestic franchisees and employees that was obtained by Bloomberg. Opnad is McDonald’s national advertising fund that includes contributions from franchise owners.

The chain, scheduled to report third-quarter earnings next week, is trying to ignite a turnaround after seven straight quarters of declining U.S. same-store sales. Targeting budget-minded diners could help it against competitors who have been advertising deals lately. McDonald’s also is trying to simplify its menu and kitchens to speed customer service at its approximately 14,300 domestic locations.

Wendy’s Co. recently started promoting a 4-for-$4 deal that includes a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger, four-piece chicken nuggets, fries and a drink. Burger King is offering coupons through its mobile-phone app, while KFC has value meals, such as a pot pie, cookie and drink, for $5.

"The successful launch of All Day Breakfast proves that when we listen to and respond to our customers and align around a great execution plan, we will grow our business and take share," Andres said. The e-mail didn’t include any specifics on strategy or the results of the all-day breakfast, which rolled out nationally last week.

McDonald’s spokeswoman Heidi Barker didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

McDonald’s shares have gained 9.7 percent this year, partially on prospects that new Chief Executive Officer Steve Easterbrook will be able to end the chain’s slump. The stock fell less than 1 percent to $102.82 at the close in New York on Wednesday.

The Big Mac seller in the past has relied on value menus and special deals to help boost sales. The Dollar Menu, introduced nationally in 2002, was changed to the Dollar Menu and More after it was no longer profitable to sell fare for just $1. This summer, McDonald’s advertised a double cheeseburger and fries for $2.50.

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