There's no question about it, McDonald's is the most successful restaurant in the history of the world. The company isn't worth millions, but billions — $147.12 billion to be exact, and that number basically climbs up every day (via Macrotrends). According to McDonald's website, their fast food burger joints are located on every continent in the world except Antarctica and the brand is constantly striving to evolve its menu.
Ever since Ray Kroc took the franchise concept and applied it to McDonald's, the brand has been growing like hotcakes and there are more McDonald's franchises in North America than anywhere else in the world (via Statista). While opening a McDonald's is not for those with a light wallet, the payoff can be pretty good, and franchise owners are making bank with the Golden Arches.
Franchise owners make a good income
According to Business Insider, the average McDonald's restaurant takes in around $2.7 million a year in sales. That may not be quite as high as Chick-fil-A or Panera, but it's still pretty good. Considering that there are far more McDonald's scattered across the planet than either Chick-fil-A or Panera, it's easy to see why McDonald's is such a rich company.
Some McDonald's franchise owners are naturally going to make more than others, but most franchise owners still pull in an estimated yearly profit of roughly $150,000 (via Fox Business). A profit of $150,000 after $2.7 million in sales isn't even 6 percent, but after food cost, supplies, crew payroll, and about a dozen other costs handed down by corporate, that's what franchisees are left with (via Bloomberg).
Franchise owners can turn to McDonald's corporate for guidance, but getting the stamp of approval to open one is the real difficulty.
Buying a McDonald's franchise cost big bucks
Buying into a McDonald's franchise isn't cheap, and if prospective franchisees want to get a piece of the Mickey D's pie, they'll have to bring some heavy coin to the table. According to Business Insider, the initial investment is between $1 million and $2.2 million.
That price tag is pretty broad, but McDonald's notes that these costs are based on the restaurant's location and size. Even the landscaping factors in. Long story short, it's going to cost a lot more to buy a McDonald's franchise in San Francisco than it is in Saginaw, Michigan.
Oh, and if you're thinking about buying a franchise, keep in mind that 40 percent of that initial investment must be cash or non-borrowed assets. Whether it's McDonald's, Wendy's, or Five Guys, fast food franchise owners do pretty well — at least once they get past that initial investment hurdle.