McDonald’s to close 200 restaurants; half of those are located in Walmart stores

Coronavirus: McDonald’s to close 200 restaurants, half of which are located inside Walmart stores

McDonald’s will close 200 restaurants across the United States, the company’s CEO announced Tuesday, making the fast-food giant part of a growing list of store closings caused at least in part by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Half of the restaurants targeted for closure are “low-volume restaurants” located in Walmart stores, Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski said in an earnings call Tuesday. The restaurants had been slated to be closed in the future, but Kempczinski said the plan to shutter the 200 locations was accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

McDonald’s has 14,000 U.S. locations and 39,000 stores worldwide. The 200 stores to be closed in the U.S. will be closed permanently, Kempczinski said. The locations of the stores have not been announced yet.

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McDonald’s implemented safety procedures in all its locations as the pandemic spread across the world. The company closed then reopened nearly a quarter of its restaurants since March.

"Within a matter of weeks, the McDonald's system made operational modifications across 30,000 restaurants, while closing and then reopening another 9,000 restaurants," Kempczinski said during Tuesday's earnings call. "We introduced new safety procedures in all our restaurants, modified our menus, and developed new contactless ways to serve our customers."

McDonald’s also announced last week that beginning Saturday it would require customers to wear a face covering or a mask when they enter one of its restaurants.

McDonald’s had resumed in-restaurant dining with limited seating in around 2,000 locations but suspended any more reopenings earlier this month amid spikes in cases of the virus. The company said opening more restaurants for in-dining service would be delayed for at least another month.