Who Owns McDonalds?

Who Owns McDonalds?

Did you know that McDonald’s has different owners because it’s a big company that anyone can invest in? According to CNN Business, most of the owners are big companies, owning about 70.14% of McDonald’s. But regular people like us, we only own about 0.31% of it. 📈💼

McDonald’s is super popular! Research says about 7% of Americans eat there every day! That’s a lot of burgers and fries, right? 🍔🍟

Because McDonald’s is so famous, lots of people want to invest in it. So, altogether, they own about 732.42 million shares! That’s worth a whopping $196.23 billion! The biggest owner is The Vanguard Group Inc, owning 8.81% of McDonald’s, which is worth a crazy $16,994,291,524! 💰🎉

So, in this article, we’re going to talk about who owns McDonald’s and some cool stuff about the company! 🏰🍔

A Brief History of McDonald’s Ownership

The first McDonald’s restaurant opened its doors in 1940, thanks to two brothers, Maurice (Mac) and Richard McDonald, who transformed their initial hot dog stand idea into a speedy burger joint. 🍔🌭

Located in San Bernardino, California, McDonald’s underwent a major transformation when the brothers decided to revamp it into a restaurant capable of serving large quantities of food quickly and affordably. They introduced the innovative “Speedee Service System,” laying the groundwork for modern fast-food establishments.

This system focused on a straightforward menu featuring hamburgers, potato chips (later swapped out for French fries), and their famous pies. Interestingly, the brothers bought the equipment for McDonald’s from a milkshake machine salesman named Ray Kroc. 🥧🥤

In 1954, Kroc recognized the nationwide potential of the McDonald’s concept and struck a deal with the brothers to franchise it. He began opening McDonald’s restaurants across the United States, launching McDonald’s Systems in Illinois in 1955, where the first franchise debuted. By 1961, Kroc had bought out the brothers for approximately $2.7 million, driven by his growing dissatisfaction with the restaurant’s operations and his desire for full control. 🏢💼

Following this change in ownership, McDonald’s experienced explosive growth, prompting Kroc to seek financing for expansion plans. Going public emerged as the most viable option, providing the company with substantial investments to fuel its growth trajectory. 📈💰

Who Were the McDonald Brothers?

Richard and Maurice McDonald were two enterprising American entrepreneurs.

Their restaurant idea sprouted in 1937 when they established a hot dog stand in California, USA, which quickly garnered a loyal customer base.

By 1940, they expanded their venture by opening a larger hot dog stand at a different location in California to attract even more patrons.

Their endeavour proved highly successful, prompting the McDonald brothers to pivot their focus to their most popular offerings: hamburgers, milkshakes, and French fries.

Richard McDonald passed away on July 14, 1998, at the age of 89, outliving Maurice, who sadly passed away at the age of 69 on December 11, 1971. 🌭🍔🍟

McDonald’s IPO

On January 21st, 1965, McDonald’s took a monumental step by opening its doors to public investment. This move was met with great enthusiasm, much to the delight of Ray Kroc, the company’s visionary leader. The Initial Public Offering (IPO) attracted significant interest from both individual and institutional investors, who eagerly purchased shares.

During the IPO, shares were priced at $22.50 each, with underwriters selling 2.6 million shares of common stock. The IPO proved to be a resounding success, with shares quickly rising to $30 on the first day of trading. This surge allowed McDonald’s to raise an impressive $6 million in capital from the offering. 💼💰

Before going public, McDonald’s was already an established company, albeit more regionally focused with only a few locations scattered across the United States. However, the IPO provided the necessary funds to fuel the company’s expansion. As a result, McDonald’s soared to become one of the most recognizable fast-food brands globally, expanding its footprint by opening thousands of locations worldwide. 🌍🍔

McDonald’s Owners and Largest Shareholders

As reported by Zippia, McDonald’s boasted approximately 38,000 restaurants worldwide by 2022, operating in approximately 118 countries and territories. In 2021, the company raked in an impressive $23.22 billion in revenue.

With around 2 million employees across its global franchises, McDonald’s stands as a major employer on the world stage. Notably, the United States leads the pack as the top revenue contributor for McDonald’s, generating an annual revenue of about $8.7 billion.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the biggest shareholders and owners of McDonald’s. 🌍🍟

The Vanguard Group, Inc

The Vanguard Group is renowned for its wide array of services, with its investment management and advisory services standing out as particularly notable. They cater to both equity investment and fixed-income groups, offering their expertise to investment pooled vehicles, separate account institutional clients, and mutual funds.

Operating globally, The Vanguard Group serves clients across Asia, Europe, and the Americas. Established in 1975, the firm has ascended to become one of the largest asset management companies worldwide, boasting an estimated global Assets Under Management (AUM) of $7.1 trillion.

According to CNN Business, The Vanguard Group holds a significant institutional ownership stake in McDonald’s, comprising 8.81% of the company. This translates to approximately 64,487,123 shares, valued at about $16,994,291,524 at the time of writing, making them the top shareholder of McDonald’s Corporation. 📈💼

SSgA Funds Management, Inc

Established in 2001, SSgA Funds Management Inc is an investment firm offering a diverse range of services, including portfolio management, investment advisory services, and financial planning. The acronym SSgA stands for State Street Global Advisors. Much like The Vanguard Group, SSgA operates on a global scale.

According to its official website, SSgA operates in 57 countries, managing assets totaling approximately $3.71 trillion, ranking it as the fourth-largest asset management company globally. With over 2,000 institutional clients and more than 32 million direct client participants, SSgA holds a significant presence in the investment world.

CNN Business reports that SSgA is the second-largest institutional owner of McDonald’s, holding an estimated stake of 4.74%. This equates to ownership of approximately 34,704,308 shares, valued at $9,145,626,287 at the time of reporting. 📊💼

BlackRock Fund Advisors

Established in 1988, BlackRock Fund Advisors is a multinational investment company headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York. Renowned as one of the world’s leading investment firms, BlackRock has built a strong reputation for providing financial services such as investment management, portfolio advice, and financial planning.

While the exact value of assets under its management remains undisclosed, industry sources estimate BlackRock’s Assets Under Management (AUM) to exceed $10 trillion as of 2022. Commonly known as BlackRock, this investment giant caters to a diverse clientele, including individual investors, financial advisors, pension plans, endowments, and foundations.

According to CNN Business reports, BlackRock ranks as the third-largest shareholder of McDonald’s, holding a 4.66% stake in the company. This ownership translates to approximately 34,163,517 shares, valued at a total of $9,003,111,635.

However, McDonald’s isn’t the only company in which BlackRock holds a significant stake. Recent reports indicate that BlackRock is a major shareholder in numerous global conglomerates, including Microsoft, Amazon, and Johnson & Johnson. 🏢💼

Wellington Management Co. LLP

Founded in 1928, Wellington Management Co. LLP stands as a prominent independent investment management firm. Managing a portfolio exceeding $1 trillion in assets, Wellington specialises in diverse investment strategies tailored to its clients’ needs. Renowned for its meticulous, research-driven investment process and long-term approach, the firm has earned a stellar reputation in the industry.

Wellington Management’s notable investment portfolio includes a significant stake in McDonald’s Corporation. Over the years, Wellington has consistently increased its holdings in the fast-food giant. According to CNN Business, Wellington ranks as the fourth-largest shareholder of McDonald’s, boasting a 2.37% stake valued at approximately $4,565,144,684.

This investment aligns seamlessly with Wellington’s long-term perspective, given McDonald’s status as a well-established brand renowned for its consistent earnings growth and dependable dividend payments. 🍔💼

Geode Capital Management LLC

Geode Capital Management LLC, headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, stands as a leading investment management firm renowned for its systematic approach to asset management. With a robust track record in handling large and diversified client portfolios, Geode Capital has solidified its position in the industry.

According to its official website, Geode Capital Management LLC boasts an impressive Assets Under Management (AUM) exceeding $866 billion. Among its notable investments, Geode Capital holds a significant stake in McDonald’s, marking it as one of its largest positions.

Recent reports indicate that Geode Capital Management LLC owns a 1.85% stake in the renowned food chain company, valued at approximately $3,563,708,021. This underscores Geode Capital’s strategic positioning within the investment landscape. 💼🍟

J.P. Morgan Investment Management

J.P. Morgan Investment Management, a division of JPMorgan Chase, stands as a venerable financial institution with a rich history dating back to its establishment in 1935.

As a division of JPMorgan Chase, J.P. Morgan Investment Management offers a comprehensive range of investment solutions to institutions, governments, and individuals worldwide. Renowned for its expertise in asset management, it ranks among the largest investment managers globally.

Notably, J.P. Morgan Investment Management holds a significant stake in the fast-food giant, McDonald’s Corporation. According to CNN reports, J.P. Morgan Investment Management ranks as the sixth-largest shareholder of McDonald’s Corporation, possessing a 1.65% stake valued at approximately $3,185,705,069 at the time of reporting.

Having maintained its investment in McDonald’s over several years, J.P. Morgan Investment Management views it as a robust long-term investment. The company attributes its confidence in McDonald’s to its strong brand, consistent financial performance, and expansive global presence. 🍔💼

Joseph M. Erlinger

Joseph Erlinger serves as the President of McDonald’s USA, where he is responsible for managing the business operations of all 14,000 McDonald’s restaurants across the United States.

As reported by Benzinga, Joseph Erlinger holds approximately 8,000 units of common stock shares in McDonald’s. 🍔💼

Ian Frederick Borden

Ian Borden holds the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at McDonald’s. In this role, he plays a crucial role in managing the company’s financial health, overseeing the finances of McDonald’s expansive network of over 39,000 restaurants spanning across more than 100 countries worldwide.

With a longstanding tenure of 30 years within the McDonald’s family, Ian Borden is among the company’s most experienced members. According to estimates from Benzinga, he possesses ownership of more than 7,000 units of common stock shares in the McDonald’s corporation. 🍟💰


McDonald’s operates as a publicly-traded company, with institutional investors holding a substantial portion of its shares. Among the top institutional shareholders are The Vanguard Group Inc, SSgA Funds Management Inc, BlackRock Fund Advisors, Wellington Management Co. LLP, and Geode Capital Management LLC.

In addition to institutional investors, key executives within the company also hold notable stakes, albeit accounting for only a small fraction (0.31%) of the total ownership of McDonald’s Corporation. Executives such as Joseph M. Erlinger and Ian Frederick Borden are among those with significant individual ownership.

With a rich history of successful operations, McDonald’s boasts a global presence and impressive financial performance. While the company’s management team and board of directors guide its strategy and direction, shareholders wield significant influence over its future trajectory through their ownership of the company’s stock. 🌐💼

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