Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Biggest restaurant chain Subway bumps McDonald's out of first place...

Move over Ronald: Subway officially overtakes McDonald's to become biggest restaurant chain in the WORLD

Last updated at 5:08 PM on 8th March 2011

  • Subway claimed 33,749 shops in 2010 compared with burger chain's 32,737

Number One: Subway has surpassed McDonald's in stores
Number One: Subway has surpassed McDonald's in stores
It looks like more people are officially ‘eating fresh’ than ‘lovin’ it,’ as Subway has now overtaken McDonald's as the world's largest restaurant chain.
The sandwich shop chain can now claim the crown of biggest fast food franchise in the world, as they have officially surpassed McDonald's, according to Subway spokesperson Les Winograd said. 
Subway now has over 1,000 more locations than McDonald's, claiming 33,749 shops in 2010, while McDonald's reported 32,737 per a regulatory filing last month.
'We overcame them at some point in 2010. One year ago, we were slightly behind,' Winograd said today.
Last year was actually pretty average for us, growth-wise. We aim to open between 1,000 and 2,000 locations globally each year,’ he added.
Subway chalks up its success partially to its private ownership, meaning that it’s not listed on the stock market.
"That is our choice, and the reason for that is that it enables us to focus on the product, the quality, the restaurants and not on the other things associated with a public company, like financial statements," said Winograd.   
End of an era: A McDonald's restaurant in Oldbury, West Midlands - one of more than 32,000 around the world
End of an era: A McDonald's restaurant in Oldbury, West Midlands - one of more than 32,000 around the world
Start of a journey: The first McDonald's in Des Plaines, Illinois in the 1950s
Start of a journey: The first McDonald's in Des Plaines, Illinois in the 1950s
The company’s growth has been widespread across Asia, where it now can boast of over 1,000 sandwich shops. They recently opened their first shop in Vietnam. 


Although Subway was launched in 1965, its restaurants did not start proliferating across the globe until the end of the 1990s.
The secret ingredient of its recent success is its sandwiches and their perceived health benefits.
Big Mac
Unlike McDonald's, whose Big Mac (pictured above) contains 30 grammes of fat, Subway boast a host of 6in subs containing five times less.
Although none of these contain the cheese and sauces routinely added by customers, the reputation as a health food has stuck.
Subway sub
So much so, the lunchtime treats have spawned the Subway diet, with a growing number of adherents claiming to have shed several pounds by eating only the firm's sandwiches, such as the Veggie Deluxe (pictured second).
And if you’re starting to feel like you’re seeing Subways just about everywhere, you are. 
The company’s success can be accredited to its placement of shops in just about any place a customer might want a sandwich. 
‘We have really unique ones, like on a riverboat in Germany, a church in Buffalo, car dealers, bowling alleys and casinos. We're not just in strip malls,’ Winograd pointed out.
It also offers sandwiches with as little as 2.6 grammes of fat - a real plus in a an increasingly health conscious age.
Subway was founded in 1965 by 17-year-old Fred De Luca in Bridgeport, Connecticut. 
The restaurant was an instant hit, grew steadily, and went international in 1984 with its first location abroad in Bahrain.
McDonald's began outside of Chicago in 1955 and grew to international dominance, becoming a staple of American culture abroad and a symbol of capitalism. 
Though the chain has been overtaken in number of locations, it is still the leader in sales, with a reported $24 billion in revenue last year.
McDonald's representative Heidi Barker responded to the news of Subways new found dominance by suggesting that the burger restaurant – famous for its ‘over 1 billion served’ signs – is interested in quality over quantity.
‘We remain focused on listening to and serving our customers, and are committed to being better, not just bigger,’ Barker said.

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