McDonalds Ranks #1 in QSR Top 50

And the No. 1 brand in the 2013 QSR 50 is … Subway!

Just kidding. It’s McDonald’s. And unless McDonald’s maybe-we-should-be-panicking-now growth funk picks up (quite a bit of) steam, this will continue to be the case for some time.

But there are reasons for new CEO Don Thompson and his leadership team to be worried. The slump the company skidded into late last year—one that cost U.S. president Jan Fields her job—doesn’t seem to have an easy fix. Fast-casual brands continue to eat into market share. Premium products like the Angus burger and Fish McBites fell flat and were pulled from the menu. Healthier options like the new Chicken McWrap haven’t taken off quite like the company expected. And even though McDonald’s continued in the last year to up its commitment to health and nutrition—with extensive activity promotions surrounding the London Summer Olympics, its decision to post calorie counts to all domestic menuboards, and new packaging that is more transparent about nutrition, as examples—it still can’t shake critique from outside groups who say the company should be doing more.

All of the negative mojo has Thompson talking about the potential of doing all-day breakfast and refocusing the menu on more burger and value products. It seems the Golden Arches might have, at least for the time being, lost a little bit of their shine.

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