Why Is McDonald’s Struggling in the Philippines?

McDonald's and Burger King have both been struggling in the Philippines because of local rival Jollibee, and now the Filipino fast-food chain is making a play for the American market.

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McDonald’s is an American fast-food behemoth. With more than 37,000 restaurants in 120 countries, the chain dominates pretty much every market it chooses to enter. But in the Philippines, where McDonald’s has been trying and failing for nearly 40 years to be No. 1, a local chain is giving McDonald’s a run for its money: Jollibee.

Jollibee Foods Corporation (JFC), which has a market capitalization of around $5 billion, owns 14 brands with 4,300 restaurants around the world. Its Jollibee brand has over 1,300 locations and is the largest fast-food chain in the Philippines, operating a domestic network of over 1,000 stores.

The corporation has also embarked on a self-confessed “aggressive” international expansion strategy that has resulted in operations in the U.S., Vietnam, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Brunei.

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