Commercial Real Estate Lessons from McDonald’s

Posted on August 8, 2018

If you ask an executive to evaluate the McDonald’s restaurant business model, you might receive a detailed report on the sales of Big Macs, french fries and milkshakes. Yet, when I analyze McDonald’s, I think real estate.

As anyone that’s watched “The Founder” knows, McDonald’s isn’t just a fast-food chain but also a brilliant $30 billion real-estate company. Part of its long-term success comes from a simple formula that goes beyond serving consistent products across thousands of restaurants around the world. A big part of its profitability comes from the fact that it owns the land and buildings at most of its locations – and its franchisees pay McDonald’s rent.

One of the most recognizable brands on the planet makes a lot of money by owning commercial real estate. Entrepreneurs who sell food, manufacture consumer goods, rent hotel rooms or run practically any other type of business can follow the lead of McDonald’s and use commercial real estate ownership as a pathway to build their wealth and secure a better retirement. This article outlines multiple strategies on how small business owners can grow their wealth with real estate and even become mini land barons.

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