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Silver Anniversary For Golden Arches In NZ

Silver Anniversary For Golden Arches In New Zealand

It's twenty-five years to the day since New Zealanders got their first taste of a Big Mac. That's when McDonald's opened for business in Porirua on 7 June 1976.

The company's faré proved instantly popular with Kiwi taste buds and today McDonald's has 147 restaurants throughout New Zealand serving more than 1.5 million burgers to New Zealanders every week.

The company's success is reflected in New Zealand having the third highest number of McDonald's restaurants per capita after the United States and Australia.

At a celebration event in Auckland today, McDonald's Chief Executive, Alan Dunn, announced the launch of the McDonald's brand online through a unique New Zealand website.

The company's new website, www.mcdonalds.co.nz, was created locally by New Zealand company Inkspot Digital and boasts world leading web technology.

"Planning for this site has been underway for some time and we saw our 25th anniversary as the perfect opportunity to take McDonald's New Zealand onto the web," says Mr Dunn.

"The site is completely animated ? designed to appeal to users of all ages and varying levels of computer expertise."

As well as being able to visit the company's head office, stop in at the restaurant or play games, the site also features a secure, monitored chat room which provides a safe environment for children.

Also at the birthday celebrations, Ronald McDonald House Charities announced it is making a $212,000 grant to assist with the establishment of New Zealand's first Paediatric Liver Transplant Unit at the Starship National Children's Hospital.

Executive Director of Ronald McDonald House Charities, Sarah Hood, says the unit is due to open early next year.

"The unit will mean children under the age of seven will no longer need to travel to Brisbane for a liver transplant," says Ms Hood.

"This grant from Ronald McDonald House Charities will be used primarily to fund equipment and clinical training start up costs for the unit. It is going to significantly help some of New Zealand's most seriously ill children."

Twenty five years on from serving the first Big Mac in Porirua, McDonald's has also taken the opportunity to undertake a major redevelopment programme at the majority of its restaurants.

"McDonald's New Zealand and our franchisees see a hugely positive future for New Zealand and will be investing more than $25 million this year to upgrade facilities at restaurants around the country. This includes expansion of the McCafé brand from seven to 20 outlets by the end of the year," says Mr Dunn.

McCafés, which provide an extended dining option to customers with a range of great coffee and café style food at compelling prices, have been enormously popular since launching three years ago in Auckland.

Ends


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