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Teaching activity

McDonald's CosMc Launch: A-Level Business in the News

Mike Mills

18th December 2023

Have a go at this teaching activity, which includes a downloadable worksheet and suggested answers.

What's the story?

McDonald's is launching a new retail concept focused on specialty coffees, teas, blended drinks, and other custom beverage options. The first location under the name "CosMc's" will open this month in a Chicago suburb, featuring a retro aesthetic. The menu will consist of lemonades, slushies, lattes, and other handcrafted drinks that customers can customise with flavours, tapioca pearls, vitamins, etc. Food options will be limited compared to a typical McDonald's. The goal is to compete with the likes of Starbucks and tap into the afternoon slump between lunch and dinner rushes.

After an initial small-scale launch in Illinois, McDonald's intends to open around 10 CosMc's stores in Texas next year to test the format's viability. The company may look to expand rapidly thereafter if successful in attracting mid-afternoon customers looking for greater drink customisation than the core McDonald's brand offers. The new concept revives a part-alien mascot named CosMc that McDonald's utilized in marketing decades ago.

This retail experiment comes as McDonald's pursues an aggressive worldwide expansion plan, aiming to open 10,000 total new stores globally over the next four years and grow its total locations to 50,000. For comparison, Starbucks currently has around 38,000 stores but a target of 55,000 by 2030. So McDonald's is making a big push, including through specially branded concepts like CosMc's, to keep pace with or outgrow leading coffee chains.

McDonald's CosMc Launch

Download this teaching activity.

Mike Mills

Mike is an experienced Head of Department, teacher and A-level Business examiner. Mike is also a popular presenter on tutor2u CPD courses and student workshops.

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