McDonald's franchisees believe the brand is in a "deep depression" and could be facing its "final days," according to a new survey.
"We are in the throes of a deep depression, and nothing is changing," one franchisee wrote in response to the survey by Nomura analyst Mark Kalinowski. "Probably 30% of operators are insolvent."
Another wrote, "The CEO is sowing the seeds of our demise. We are a quick-serve fast-food restaurant, not a fast casual like Five Guys or Chipotle. The system may be facing its final days."
More than a dozen franchisees expressed frustration with McDonald's management, saying CEO Steve Easterbrook's turnaround plan — which includes initiatives like all-day breakfast and a shift to digital ordering kiosks — is a distraction from McDonald's core issues, like food quality and customer service.