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The Buzz: McDonald's 20-year plan

Nov. 18, 2013
 
McDonald's on W. College Ave. in Grand Chute was the franchise's latest redo.
McDonald's on W. College Ave. in Grand Chute was the franchise's latest redo. / Maureen Wallenfang/Post-Crescent Media

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Two years ago, McDonald’s at Northland and Richmond in Appleton got a modern redo inside and out in keeping with the mature chain’s national push to bring a more contemporary feel to its restaurants.

Over the last few months, McDonald’s on West College Avenue in Grand Chute was likewise redone with the modern design and tech upgrades. Neenah’s S. Green Bay Road branch is next up, with work that started this summer stretching into spring 2014.

While it’s not unusual for national restaurant chains to invest in redos of aging restaurants, this large-scale overhaul of local McDonald’s franchises eventually will upgrade 15 local branches over a period of 20 years at a cost estimated on the low side at $6 million.

“Eventually all but our mall location will be updated to match the new Arcade building design,” said Chuck Kuen, president of Valley Management. “The cost per location ranges on the low end of $400,000 upward to $800,000.”

He said that cost is split 35/65 between the corporation and franchisee, and while corporate requested the redos they weren’t mandated.

“Their participation in the cost is to incentivize operators to adopt the look, and it is working nationwide,” he said.

Valley Management owns 16 Fox Cities and Fond du Lac locations, skipping Oshkosh. The redos started five years ago with a rebuild of a 1959 Fond du Lac branch opened by Walter Rause. Today, his son, David A. Rause, and grandson, David W. Rause, own the franchise company.

— Maureen Wallenfang: 920-993-1000, ext. 287, or mwallenfang@postcrescent.com; on Twitter @wallenfang

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