27 August 2012, 20:19

McDonald’s mulling eastward expansion

McDonald’s mulling eastward expansion

In the period since the late 1980s, the McDonald’s fast food chain has opened 324 outlets in this country. Dozens more are in the pipeline, to be opened at airports and rail terminals. So far, the company’s presence in Russia has been confined to the European part of the country. Now, however, things are beginning to change.

According to the company’s Russia development director Viktor Eidemiller, one of the chain’s Russian franchise holders is to open at least 10 McDonald’s restaurants in Siberia. It is eying sites in the West Siberian cities of Novosibirsk, Barnaul, Tomsk and Novokuznetsk and is about to break ground on a McDonald’s project in the biggest city in Central Siberia, Krasnoyarsk.

Its Krasnoyarsk restaurant will cost it anything up to 130mln roubles. It will be a detached building with a drive-thru service, separate facilities for children and a banquet hall.

According to McDonald’s East Europe and Russia CEO Hamzat Hasbulatov, the expansion into Siberia became possible after the company developed a logistical chain which should link its Siberian outlets to supply bases in European Russia. The main stopovers and distribution centres on the way will be Kazan and Yekaterinburg.

We have some figures from chief analyst of Russia’s Investkafe company Mr Anton Safonov. He says Russia’s market for fast food is at about 120bln roubles a year, and Moscow and the capital’s surrounding region account for 40% of it. In 2011, the sales grew by 17%. In Moscow and the surrounding region, they shot up by almost 30%.

In Siberia, only two global fast food chains currently operate outlets, Subway and KFC. The latter has been present in Siberia since 2002. It is the area’s biggest and fastest growing fast food chain. Most of its expansion is accounted for by new drive-thru services in many Siberian cities.

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