McDonald’s Looking to Unload Its Japanese Branch

December 22, 2015, 10:17 PM UTC
A customer orders food at a McDonald's restaurant in Tokyo on July 30, 2014. The fast-food giant's more than 3,000 restaurants in Japan started selling new tofu nuggets modelled on a traditional side dish that meshes tofu, vegetables and fish, as the chain scrambles to minimise the damage from an embarrassing tainted meat scandal in China. AFP PHOTO / Yoshikazu TSUNO (Photo credit should read YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP/Getty Images)
Photograph by Yoshikazu Tsuno — AFP via Getty Images

McDonald’s (MCD) is reportedly looking to sell a big chunk of shares of its Japanese subsidiary.

McDonald’s Holding Co. (Japan) (MDNDF) was established in 1971 as a joint venture between McDonald’s and Fujita & Co., each entity owning 50%. Fujita sold most of its stock about 10 years ago, and now Nikkei Asian Review reports that McDonald’s wants to sell 15%-to-33% of its shares, although the publication did not specify where that information came from.

The parent company currently owns about half of the Japanese branch. A sale, which is expected to bring in about $817 million, could potentially make the buyer the largest shareholder. The subsidiary’s stock fell about 8% during Tokyo’s trading day after the news was reported.

According to Bloomberg, McDonald’s Japan has predicted a loss of approximately $314 million this year, a significant jump from 2014’s $180 million loss. While the company’s sales were already unimpressive, they certainly weren’t helped by a string of food safety issues, including foreign objects found in customers’ food and the alleged use of expired meat.


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