Comments: 4486 • Responses: 106  • Date: 

mann03822148 karma

How many complimetary ketchup packets could i take before i could get kicked out?

McSoldIt2591 karma

All of them. Just ask for the box.

Crusader1089535 karma

Would you ever have given me the Big Mac sauce? Because no-one ever lets me have it on my fries.

McSoldIt1215 karma

Yeah, of course! We can do that by squirting some into a sundae lid, and charging you for one sachet of Mayo, which is 40c. Suggest this to the server next time you're there, they're still making money off of it!

Iamthewabbit1197 karma

TIL sachet of mayo

McSoldIt1004 karma

grWEn277 karma

In Canada, the ketchup is self-service, so I guess you can take the jar and bring it home. Free ketchup for the next months.

McSoldIt115 karma

Oh wow!

shawath1382 karma

If we can put a man on th moon... Why can't I have an egg mc muffin after 10:30?

McSoldIt2003 karma

Because we have to clean our grills in order to ensure food safety.. Sorry!

robreddity1221 karma

Why, WHY WHY did they discontinue hot mustard sauce?


In all seriousness what does a brother have to do to get it back? I pretty much have no reason to ever return to McDonald's again until hot mustard sauce has been restored.

McSoldIt1268 karma

To be honest, if corporate sees that there is a wide spread of interest in something returning - they'll give it back to you! You must speak people!

Do a petition, get loads of names on it, and submit it to them. You never know.

BaconCanada1205 karma

About what % of your revenue did you personally take home as income after operating costs?

McSoldIt1899 karma

I took home 15%, which was around $600,000 last year.

BaconCanada943 karma

Goddamn. That's 200k a branch. I need me a franchise. USD?

McSoldIt1155 karma

USD that's 572k. You're probably better off having a scan of their site though. Join Us.

Paddyish794 karma

sdlanodcM nioJ

.'nioj' fo gnilleps eht degnahc :TIDE

tIdloScM/u/ ot sknahT

McSoldIt1836 karma

*s'ldanodcM nioJ

You spelt 'Join' wrong..

18andover771 karma

How much work was required of you per week on average? If my goal were to own one McDonalds and do the minimum amount of work possible, while also running it well, how low do you think I could get that weekly number of hours? And what would I be doing in that time?

McSoldIt1330 karma

I would work 9am - 5pm, 6 days a week. Mostly I'm at my office sorting problems remotely from there. I liked to pop down to my couple stores at least a couple times a day and check on them - make sure they're clean, and to check on the Restaurant Manager about any issues. Typically I used to work hard for 4-6 hours a day, with the rest out in the stores just checking on them.

Cyernide743 karma

What was your worst customer experience?

McSoldIt1880 karma

People swearing at me when they realize who I am. I've been blamed for the hospitalization of an individual due to obesity. Wasn't my fault - they just didn't balance their diet.

clinttaurus_242727 karma

They should have eaten ONLY at McDonalds. They'd have lost the weight.

McSoldIt537 karma

Thanks for the link - I'll have a wee read of it!

CptThunderCracker385 karma

A wee read...

You are definitely hanging round with the Irish lads aren't you?

EDIT: Shit, lads I was just messin, the Irish say wee too. Didn't say it wasn't a Scottish thing, and we do share a lot culturally. Alcoholism for instance.

McSoldIt205 karma

Hahaha, oh goodness.

firmkillernate690 karma

What was your best experience owning that McDonald's?

McSoldIt1133 karma

To be honest, dealing with some of the staff that worked there. Yeah I admit, I was an ass at times, but they were all hard working guys. The Restaurant Manager always did their best to have an efficient and tidy store, and we both had a mutual respect for eachother.

That and actually opening my store after a year of planning. The first day of operation is always a big one, and it is a huge relief to not only myself, but also the corporate team.

thechickenhead560 karma

Whats your weight?

Ninja edit: I know, I am mean

McSoldIt890 karma

Ooh, snappy! I'm 102kg, which is around 220 pounds I believe. Too potato to Google.

thechickenhead321 karma

Also, what's your favorite burger?

And what the hell do you out in those delicious french fries?

McSoldIt616 karma

I always loved a McChicken, but adding cheese. With our fries, we just deep fry them in Vege Oil, salt them then serve!

WNW3275 karma

which is around 220 pounds I believe

Very good! 224.872lbs to be exact. That would have won you the showcase on Price is Right.

McSoldIt340 karma

Damn I'm good.

MorrisM497 karma

NZ sounds quite isolated in terms of geography. Where were from your raw materials suppliers?

McSoldIt973 karma

All local here in New Zealand. The only external goods we get imported is Heinz Ketchup. It's great for the economy.

pootastic310 karma

Will you expound upon this please? I've heard that McDonalds is actually really good for the local farm economy but most people don't know that. What did you buy local and what did you import? did you see an overall positive impact on the farm and animal raining communities in your region? also: Totally jealous of your NZ locale. Want to go there one day. I'm sure I will, but it'll be a decade or so from now.

McSoldIt645 karma

Everything is sourced from within New Zealand. Eggs from Nelson, Bacon from Nelson too, Beef from the Waikato. It is a stable boost for the economy - it means the farmers and the providers have a steady source of income, which allows them to grow considerably.

MorrisM90 karma

Did you have to provide the recipes, or how this has worked? I mean there are buns, burgers, pies, ice cream, milkshakes, nuggets, particular type of potatoes... I would really like to know that.

McSoldIt199 karma

From what I know, the suppliers were given the recipes, and we just order from them like you would normally. Corporate adjusts the recipes depending on what is available in the country, and they just make it work.

Neddy93474 karma

Do you have any regrets?

McSoldIt885 karma

In hindsight, yes. Having the foodcourt store really damaged the company financially, especially after it closed - barely broke even on my initial investment, which was heart breaking.

jerk_twistie430 karma

Hi, thank you for doing this AMA. Few questions.

What kind of qualifications is required to open a Mcdonald's franchise (apart from money, is there certain critiera you must fulfill)? How much capital are you required to have to open a McDonalds and what exactly do you own?

I own a few service stations and have always been fascinated with fast food shops.

McSoldIt655 karma

  • You're required to have a business degree, or a successful business career. You're also required to put in $650,000 to help start up.
  • McDonald's owns the land, and the building. That's how corporate earns their money - through lease. I only own what is inside the store.

Service stations have always intrigued me - much more interesting than fast food outlets.

jerk_twistie198 karma

Thanks for the reply, that sounds very similar to service station industry, except there are 3 parties involved. The landlord owns the petrol station itself, whilst everything else is owned by franchisor with the franchisee just operating the service station.

With the amount of gross income turning over, it seems like you're a high paid employee, but you bear all the risk of a business owner. Does McD do anything to help you improve your sales or try maximize the profits from your property whilst you run it? Or do they just monitor it and show up from time to time to ensure everything is running smoothly?

McSoldIt249 karma

That's quite interesting to see how a servo is run!

Yeah, we have a long way to fall sometimes. But the benefit of operating under such a huge umbrella like McDonald's is that you don't have to market yourself, worry about stock issues, or innovation - that's all done for you. All I have to do is make sure everything is working efficiently at my end.

jerk_twistie87 karma

What would you say is the maximum amount of McD you could run by yourself (without exceeding 40 hours per week)? Or is there no limit, as in, you could hire a district manager and regional manager etc.?

McSoldIt176 karma

You could always hire a District Manager or something, it just comes down to whether or not you have the effort for it. For example I know of somebody in the country who owns 11 McDonald's which are spaced throughout the country!

rambotito387 karma

Will you try and open up a new franchise is the future? If you do, I highly suggest Whataburger !

stayclassytally506 karma

We can't get Whataburger north of Alabama or west of Texas...

If anyone read this and is coming from the South to Chicago anytime soon. I need a Honey Butter Chicken biscuit. Stat

Edit: made a guess and fudged up the western extent of Whataburgers reach

McSoldIt403 karma

If anybody's coming to NZ - sneak one in for me. stat

McSoldIt167 karma

I'm not too sure, I'm trying to get out of the food industry. But I'll definitely have a look into it, seen as though there aren't any outlets in New Zealand.

Deadpool1205344 karma

McSoldIt160 karma

Good god, that was a good laugh!

blue_jammy316 karma

Do you consider MCD to have been a good franchise? Do you think you would have done better if you had opened a Taco Bell or a Wendys or something? The market just seems very saturated with McD. Seems like it would take some of the excitement out of owning one.

Also, and plans to work for McD in the future? Maybe as an executive or something? Seems like you have a lot of history with the company.

McSoldIt520 karma

Overall, yeah, I consider my time at McDonald's to be quite an eye opener of sorts. It's kind of hard to say, but there's always room for improvement, and there's always "what if" scenarios. And yeah, to be honest, I am bored with McDonald's. The first few months of a store's life are always the most exciting - because you have to weed out the problems. It just gets so efficient that it bores me sometimes.

At this stage, no. My plans are to isolate myself from McDonald's and move into a field that not only makes a difference, but also interests me. Thanks for the question!

TonyCubed255 karma

You come across as a level headed franchisee, would you mind coming to the UK to replace the asshat bellend who runs our stores please?

McSoldIt189 karma

Happily. And thanks!

chaseman421260 karma

What age did you lose your virginity?

McSoldIt479 karma

Haha, goodness, 17.

Rico_Suave1226 karma

What was the worst thing an individual did whilst employed/being interviewed by you?

McSoldIt510 karma

Whilst interviewing for a Restaurant Manager I had somebody pick their nose and 'roll and flick' it. Haha, they didn't get the position.

SirSevy115 karma

Safe to say they didn't really want the position? Like maybe they we're on parole and putting off having a job? Or were they just socially inept?

McSoldIt316 karma

Oh boy, socially inept is an understatement.

SnapHook170 karma

Where did you get the experience to start your first one?

McSoldIt425 karma

From about the age of 19 I worked at McDonald's, worked my way up from the bottom, and eventually became a Shift Manager. I went to College and got a Business Degree, got a loan, and built a McDonald's! They say that McDonald's employees always notice the best places for new McDonald's, they aren't kidding. This helped choose the position for my first store.

tryout99114 karma

hi. about the loan - how much did you have to put in and what was your credit situation then for you to get approved for a $650k biz loan? basically, how does one get $650k to start a mcD? thanks.

McSoldIt231 karma

The bank saw me as a viable 'investment', and they saw that McDonald's loans pay off very quickly, and the chances are, if I got a loan with them, I'd bank with them too. So that's my thinking behind it.

SnapHook89 karma

What about someone who has the funds but has zero experience running a food restaurant?

McSoldIt158 karma

Approach your corporate office. You don't necessarily need the hands-on experience in regards to service, but you will need some experience in running a business, so a degree would help in that department.

Cynical_Catharsis162 karma

Since this is an AMA and youve been forthcoming when it comes to gross income, what was your net? What was the biggest portion of costs? Did you have any control over menu, pricing etc?

McSoldIt246 karma

Last year, across my two stores the total turnover was just over $4 million, which was a little lower than usual. After expenses, We'd gross just over $3 million.

We had a surprising amount of control over the cost of our menu actually, as it all depends on our position in relation to the suppliers. That's why Corporate always asks to ring your local McDonald's for information when you're asking them about pricing.

hurrahforkittens137 karma

What's the quality of food actually like there? I know people love to rant on about McD's being horrible quality and packed with chemicals etc. but I have never read about what is genuinely in the food. I have always assumed the quality for such a dominant chain must be held to tight regulations and that maybe it is not as bad as people make it out to be.

McSoldIt389 karma

Not doing a plug for Macca's here, but the food quality is actually fairly good. No chemicals in them, at least not anymore and there hasn't been for a fair while - they're old wive's tales. Sure - we might not use the best parts of the chicken for the nuggets, but there's no beaky bullshit going on there.

molly68126 karma

Do you eat the food? Be it occasionally or regularly? Thanks.

McSoldIt266 karma

Very occasionally. I don't know why, but I'm not actually too fond of McDonald's - ever since I started working there as a teen.

yzcheema110 karma


McSoldIt289 karma

I drive a BMW M6.

hiddenmoose55 karma


McSoldIt133 karma

It has enough powerrrrrrrrrr

929rr109 karma

What (if anything) would you say Burger King does better than Mc D's?

McSoldIt264 karma

They flame grill their stuff! Like my god, it's so good! I swear if McDonald's did that, everything would just be better - apart from flame grilling Filets.. that's just weird.

gruesomestrudel108 karma

Huh. I guess the burgers are better at hungry jack's.

McSoldIt143 karma

They are.

twojake86 karma

i feel like company get together type things are avoided so much in fast food when that would be an amazing thing for the culture of the workplace do you do anything like that?

McSoldIt181 karma

When I had my two stores - yeah! We used to have Crew Days where we would go to the beach or something, and have a barbecue. There were about 70 staff at our last one (Late 2013), and it was a great time to forge some friendships and bonds between stores.

Is that what you meant?

batteryalwayslow76 karma

What made you choose mc D?

McSoldIt104 karma

Initially, before opening my first store, I was actually a Shift Manager at a store around 80km from where I based these stores. I saw an opportunity for business, and I took it.

ellisto52 karma

Was working at McDonalds as a shift manager your only job at that point? How on earth did you afford the franchise opening costs/liquid assets requirements?

McSoldIt100 karma

It was my only job, and it managed to get me through University. I actually resigned from McDonald's after I got my degree. I then got a hefty loan from the bank, and brought into McDonald's. The bank said yes, as long as I signed up my company accounts with them, so that was done!

ellisto58 karma

so you had no upfront out-of-pocket investment? it was all a loan?

(maybe this is how business always works, and i'm just clueless)

McSoldIt105 karma

It was all a loan, correct.

batteryalwayslow38 karma

Anything that you could have done differently? In hindsight?

McSoldIt79 karma

I would have pressed harder for a location nearer to the highway. We were on an offshoot, and I feel like the convenience of two of the stores were affected by this.

i4mn3074 karma

Hi! Thanks for doing this.

My question is:

  • How hard was it to manage your outlet in the beginning?

  • Were there any harshness from the McDonald's corporation side of things when things went bad on your end?

  • How much were you making a day on average just before you sold your outlet?

McSoldIt125 karma

  • At the beginning, it was very difficult. But McDonald's have some good processes in place for support of new franchisees, and they helped me immensely.

  • They were very harsh - but fair. At the end of the day, I am an extension of their brand, and if something goes wrong, it is my fault. And its also my job to get it fixed, and ensure processes are put in place to make sure that it doesn't happen again.

  • The average monthly gross income across the two stores last year was $341,462. Divide that by 30, which is $11,382 per day across two outlets, or an average $5,691 per outlet, per day.

SleeperWithDogs69 karma

So you say it doesn't pay off to own a McDonalds chain in New Zealand?

McSoldIt134 karma

I'm not saying that at all as a generalized statement. The thoroughfare running through the McDonald's location was falling, therefore sales were falling, hence why I have sold the store. Believe me though, owning a McDonald's is one of the best things I have done.

Vitztlampaehecatl58 karma

How much profit did you make off of all of them?

McSoldIt145 karma

A hell of a lot. I averaged $3.87 million dollars total turnover per year over 12 years of owning McDonald's franchises, which is around $46 million.

ndrww68 karma

How much did you sell for?

McSoldIt148 karma

I'm not stating exactly, but it was just above $1.4 million.

alyozha59 karma

How did you pull together the funds to purchase your first franchise?

McSoldIt131 karma

I got a loan from the bank, but I easily paid it off within the first 10 months of operation.

iwonderifthiswillfit58 karma

So what's next? How much money did you make annually? Will you make enough money from selling that you will be able to retire? Sorry to be so intrusive, obviously don't answer if you're uncomfortable doing so.

McSoldIt142 karma

I really couldn't mind! It's an ask me anything ;)
Last year the two stores produced a combined turnover of just over $4 million. After 12 years of being with McDonald's - yeah, I probably could retire. But I want to move into a field where I can actually make a difference and do something that I love, so I hope to keep working.


ShutUpBearPotato53 karma

If you're not too fond of McDonald's, then what is your favorite fast food chain?

McSoldIt141 karma

I actually quite like Subway.

Patches6731 karma

In that time did you make enough money to retire? I know someone who started up his own comic book store and in only ten years he claimed he made enough money to retire and shut the store down and sold everything off.

McSoldIt50 karma

After having my first store for 5 years, I could have retired and lived nicely.

ElMangosto25 karma

You said that you pocketed 1.4 million dollars from the sale of a restaurant. Why would someone pay you 1.4 million when they could open their own store for 600k?

McSoldIt64 karma

Because the restaurant has already been established. The local customer base knows about it, and they will keep coming back. It actually seems to me like they're not buying the business, but they're buying the customer base.

tacoslammer10 karma

Hi, My brother owns two stores here in Australian and my girlfriend is a kiwi. She always gets upset at me and my brother, and Australian McDonald's as a whole when we go to McDonalds and they don't have a hot chocolate machine through drive through (apparently huge over there). I don't have a question, but can you please tell her to chill out about it? It's not a big deal Cheers

McSoldIt30 karma

Dear /u/tacoslammer's girlfriend.

At McDonald's sometimes we don't have stuff - it happens. But we have lot's of alternatives, like McCafe hot chocolates, or filter coffee, or you can purchase a white tea and buy a couple flakes and chuck 'em in and do a little bit of a DIY job. But it'll be okay. There are bigger problems. And remember, chocolate will always be there for you to help you through the bad times. McDonald's will be too. Go to McDonald's though. /r/ShamelessPlug


grWEn7 karma

Why there is no vegetarian burgers at McDonalds? I mean, Wendy's, A&W, Burger King, etc, have a vegie burger but McDonalds not.

McSoldIt7 karma

Unfortunately we dont - which is a pain.

JudgeJoeCool4 karma

How much control did you have over the shop, versus the corporate oversight of McDonalds Inc.?

McSoldIt11 karma

To be honest with you, I have very limited control in the way the store was developed, and run. Color schemes, furniture and interior fittings are all 'suggested' by corporate. Operations-wise however is completely over to me. It is up to me and the Restaurant Manager to ensure that the processes are followed, otherwise we'd bare the brunt of the 'corporate storm'.

TommyyyGunsss4 karma

As a New Yorker in Australia, I'm so saddened that your side of the world does not have the mcgriddle, what is this about?

McSoldIt12 karma

Ah, but wait! The McGriddle is a limited time thing here in New Zealand, and it is coming back from July the 26th for a limited time as a part of the 'Only at Macca's' promotion.

Shameless plug for McDonald's - ain't even fazed.

thetotesmcgoats13 karma

How did you initially acquire the stores? They don't allow borrowed money. Did you actually save up $650,000 to open your first store by working there?

Also, your pickles are really tasty. Ar you allowed to sell them to customers by the bag?

McSoldIt6 karma

I got a business loan from the bank for a sum of 650k, and discussed with McDonald's about the opening of a store in my area - they were all for it!

Regarding the pickle situation.. Hmm.. You should be able to purchase them from the supplier, but I don't think we can sell them to you, because that means we'll have less stock in store, so I won't make money off of it!

Nice_and_Polite2 karma

Thank you for doing this AMA. I have always thought about opening a McDonald's.

  • How much did you borrow and how much of your own money did you put into your first store?

  • Did corporate like the fact that you were a former manager and waive/loosen any requirements for you because of this?

McSoldIt4 karma

  • I borrowed the total amount of funds to open my first store.
  • I think they liked it - it meant that I didn't have to go through the 10-12 months of unpaid training, which was pretty primo!

Hopefully that answers your questions!

KJ_All_Day2 karma

Why not just keep the McRib on the menu permanently?

McSoldIt9 karma

We don't have the McRib here, but I'm guessing that it's either to create a false demand for it, or because the stock that is required to make the item doesn't break even in the long-run.

sdcg812 karma

Do I want fry's with that? Would I like two apple pies for a dollar?

McSoldIt1 karma

Two apple pies for a dollar? Damn, that is good value.

Sh_doubleE_ran2 karma

Would you locations make a McGangbang if i ordered it? Instead of me assembling it later.

McSoldIt2 karma

If you wanted them too, and they weren't busy - there's nothing stopping them!

kidneyshifter2 karma

Hi Mate, Where did you get the original capital outlay for the first store, and how old are you?

McSoldIt4 karma

Corporate recommended a layout for the store, but we made a few modifications that we felt would benefit us the most.

I'm 36.

kidneyshifter4 karma

Yeah, that's not the exact question I asked, but seeing as I work for a commercial interior design company I guess it's a damn good response to one I didn't even think of asking! lol.

Sweet, I guess there's time for me to own a franchise yet!

McSoldIt4 karma

Mate there's always time. If you want it - go for it.

MrMaggiesDad1 karma

How much did it cost you, and how much did it sell for? Is flipping McDonalds a profitable business, or were you lucky to get out with your shirt?

McSoldIt2 karma

The two stores cost me a total of $1.2 million to set up, however they've had a profit turnover of $42 million over their operational lives so far. The money I sold this store for (~$1.4 million) went straight into my pocket.

KAROWD1 karma

Do the filet o fishes in New Zealand and other countries use different fish than the US or the same? I love those things :>

McSoldIt3 karma

We source our Filet locally from the South Island of New Zealand, and is Hoki Fillet. I believe the American chains actually source their Filet from us!

Cizzar1 karma

You're always writing that you want to make a difference and do something that you love.
I know you probably just want to keep your business idea secret, but could you go a bit more into detail about what you want to do next ?

Or do you just don't know yet ?

McSoldIt1 karma

I want to keep it relatively secret seen as though it is quite a specialized market here in New Zealand, but it is to do with Transportation.

Crusader10891 karma

You have said you want to get out of the food industry. Could you outline why?

And what industry are you trying to move into?

McSoldIt1 karma

Food industry is pretty variable, so I want to move into something more stable. I'm not disclosing that specifically seen as though it's a pretty niche market, but it's to do with transport.

cosmotravella0 karma

is it possible for someone to own a franchise like McDonalds without first have $200,000 US to invest?

McSoldIt4 karma

Nearly impossible. You need that initial high-end investment for the initial lease agreement and appliances. So you'd be very hard pressed to do it for under that.

cosmotravella-69 karma

Thank you. I am a co-founder of a US non-profit organization that encourages US middle and high school kids to study the hard subjects of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM subjects). Do you know of any philanthropic individuals who would like to learn more about us?

McSoldIt18 karma

Shameless plug, but okay.