Deepak Talwar explains what McDonald’s must do to revamp its market in India

Deepak Talwar explains what McDonald’s must do to revamp its market in India

McDonald's, which celebrated its silver jubilee in India this week, needs to reinvent itself to conquer the market,Deepak Talwar, a seasoned market analyst said.

 The company’s 25-year-long journey encompassed huge success, but hasn’t been able to match the standards lately. The US fast food giant must realize it has 1.2 billion Indians as potential consumers, and only 480 restaurants serving such huge numbers isn’t enough.

 McDonald’s growth has been far slower than it should have been, and, as a result, it has impacted both the size and stature of the brand.

 As per statistics available around fast food, India, till the early 2000s, was not considered a serious ‘eat-out’ market, and only 3 out 100 meals were out-of-home at a restaurant or eatery. But in the last two decades, the number has crept up to 8 or 9 per 100 meals – including take-aways and home deliveries.

“I would say the addressable market remains small. And if one compares the Indian journey with that across the world, one would realise McDonald’s has had families with young kids as their core target audience. But that is not the case in India where the core franchise is more teenagers and college kids,” states Deepak Talwar.

 He added, it is a pity that the core proposition, therefore, of a family outing at McDonald’s has got diluted in India. At the same time, teenagers frequently visit CCD, Costa Coffee, Starbucks, Taco Bell, Domino’s and KFC, as close substitutes to the brand.

McDonald’s must decode why their burger as a full meal has been a difficult idea to sell in India. The company needs to move out burger as more than just a snack, and explore options to sell it as a meal time consumption food.


“Again, the localised menu worked for McDonald’s across the world but the concept failed in India. The Rs 20 Aloo Tikki Burger brought down the image of the brand many notches. They should have realised tikki is available everywhere in India. The group needs to create some flagship food items,” said Deepak Talwar.

McDonald’s wants 1,000 outlets in the next five years but it should already have been achieved in these 25 years. The company must rebuild the kids and family franchise carefully, so competitors cannot make a dent.


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