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McDonald’s was founded in 1940 as a restaurant operated by Richard and Maurice McDonald, in San Bernardino, California, USA. They rechristened their business as a hamburger stand. The first time a McDonald’s franchise used the Golden Arches logo was in 1953 at the opening of Phoenix, Arizona, USA. In 1955, Ray Kroc, a businessman, joined the company as a franchise agent and proceeded to purchase the chain from the McDonald brothers. McDonald’s had its original headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois, but has approved plans to move its global headquarters to Chicago by 2018.
McDonald’s is the world’s largest restaurant chain by revenue, serving over 69 million customers daily in over 100 countries across approximately 36,900 outlets as of 2016. Although McDonald’s is known for its hamburgers, they also sell cheeseburgers, chicken products, french fries, breakfast items, soft drinks, milkshakes, wraps, and desserts. In response to changing consumer tastes and a negative backlash because of the unhealthiness of their food, the company has added to its menu salads, fish, smoothies, and fruit. The McDonald’s Corporation revenues come from the rent, royalties, and fees paid by the franchisees, as well as sales in company-operated restaurants. According to a BBC report published in 2012, McDonald’s is the world’s second largest private employer (behind Walmart with 1.9 million employees), 1.5 million of whom work for franchises.