McDonald’s Japan Sales Show a Promising Rebound After Years-Long Slump

August 9, 2016, 7:08 AM UTC
An employee of McDonald's Japan serves the new menu "Vegetable Chicken Burger" as the company president Sarah Casanova announces the new business strategy at a restaurant in Tokyo on May 21, 2015. McDonald's Japan unveiled a revamped business strategy and a new menu on May 21 as it looks to put a damaging contamination scandal behind it. AFP PHOTO / Yoshikazu TSUNO (Photo credit should read YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP/Getty Images)
Photograph by Yoshikazu Tsuno—AFP/Getty Images

McDonald’s Japan managed to swing to a small first-half operating profit, helped as sales staged a long-awaited rebound after slumping in the previous two years on a series of food safety scandals.

The Japan unit of McDonald’s Corp (MCD) reported an operating profit of 47 million yen ($460,000) for January-June, compared with a 18.3 billion yen loss for the same period a year ago.

Revenue climbed 23% to 104.9 billion yen.

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The company’s stock surged last month after it said its 3,000 outlets in Japan would host battles between Pokemon characters in the mobile Pokemon GO game but the shares have since given up most of those gains.

McDonald’s Japan maintained its forecast for a full-year operating profit of 3.3 billion yen.

Any bump-up in revenue from Pokemon GO is not expected to be evident until the company reports for the current quarter ending on Sept 30.