McDonald’s commits $250 million to new franchise owners in an effort to increase and improve diversity within the company.
On Wednesday, the internationally known burger joint announced its new initiative, which includes the company seeking out potential franchisees from marginalized communities. The food giant plans on donating $250 million over the course of five years to these selected individuals who have struggled to find money to buy a McDonald’s restaurant.
The move comes after the company has faced several racial bias and discrimination accusations from former and current Black franchisees and employees.
In September 2020, Mickie D’s went up against a lawsuit filed against them by 52 Black franchisees who claimed the company denied them an equal amount of financial support compared to their white counterparts, among other race bias-related allegations.
“Upfront entry costs are a barrier to entry for many entrepreneurs who may have limited access to capital,'” Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s President and CEO, said in a message to employees that seen by USA TODAY, the news outlet reports. “This barrier may be particularly felt by candidates from different backgrounds, including from historically underrepresented groups. To address the issue, we will seek to reduce upfront equity requirements for eligible franchisee candidates.”
As part of the initiative, the restaurant plans on providing new franchisees with training and other developmental resources.
“This will help new franchisees get off to a strong start, and give all franchisees an equal opportunity to grow,” Kempczinski said.