By Kane Wu and Julie Jargon
McDonald's Corp. is inviting bids for a significant stake in its Japan unit, after reaching a deal to sell its China and Hong Kong franchises, according to people familiar with the situation.
The Oak Brook, Ill.-based fast-food giant owns through subsidiaries just under 50% of the unit, which is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and has a market capitalization of around $3.5 billion. McDonald's is looking to sell up to 33% of the unit, with bids due next week, the people said. A number of private-equity firms are considering bids, they said. Morgan Stanley is running the sale, one of the people said. The bank didn't reply to queries on the deal.
A spokesman for McDonald's said the company is continuing to explore a potential sale of a portion of its ownership in McDonald's Japan but that no decisions have been made at this time.
McDonald's move to trim its stake in its Japan unit follows an announcement earlier in the week that it is selling an 80% stake in its China operations for up to an estimated $2 billion, as fast-food operators throughout the world dump assets and focus on managing their brands. The model lets companies collect a piece of sales without the costs and headache of managing hundreds of stores.
Wayne Ma and Atsuko Fukase contributed to this article.
Write to Kane Wu at Kane.Wu@wsj.com and Julie Jargon at firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
January 12, 2017 06:25 ET (11:25 GMT)
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