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Golden Arch Support


In Business This Week: HEADLINER: JACK GREENBERG

GOLDEN ARCH SUPPORT

Just as McDonald's piles lettuce and tomato on its new "Deluxe" sandwiches, it's topping off management with a numbers man. On Oct. 8, Chief Financial Officer Jack Greenberg became chairman of its 12,000-unit U.S. operations. The object, says McDonald's CEO Michael Quinlan: to "bring more management firepower where we need it."

That, clearly, would be McDonald's domestic business, where same-store sales are slipping at the hands of Burger King and Wendy's. Greenberg must soothe some franchisees upset by a costly effort to erect 800-plus new restaurants annually. And analysts aren't happy with McDonald's USA Chief Executive Edward Rensi--or the company's drifting stock.

Rensi will retain his post, but will report now to Greenberg. Greenberg, who arrived at McDonald's in 1982 from auditor Arthur Young, pledges to improve profits for the company and cash-flow for owner-operators. He says he'll spend "a lot of time" with franchisees, though morale is better than some believe: "It's more controversial in the press than around here."By Greg Burns EDITED BY KEITH H. HAMMONDSReturn to top

ANTEING UP FOR A DIGITAL JOURNAL

THEY COULD GET IT FOR FREE via Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser, but 30,000 subscribers are paying up to $49 for a year's subscription to the Wall Street Journal's Interactive Edition. The service, which contains the full text of all Journal editions plus news updates, archival access, and other features, began charging on Sept. 21, five months after its debut. Between 35% and 40% of the paying customers also get the newsprint Journal, which costs $164 a year. But publisher Dow Jones expects that less than 10% of the overlapping audience will drop the print version. "Most people still want the Journal on paper," says newspaper analyst John Morton. The Journal says the Interactive Edition needs a little more than 100,000 subscribers before it turns a profit.EDITED BY KEITH H. HAMMONDSReturn to top

MOTOROLA'S QUARTER FROM HELL

IN SEPTEMBER, MOTOROLA warned of disappointing third-quarter results. On Oct. 8, the numbers arrived--in slightly worse shape than expected. The technology giant reported a 58% drop in net income, to $206 million, and said that cost-cutting will trim "tens of millions" from profits in the fourth quarter. Christopher Galvin, chief operating officer, blamed the semiconductor industry recession and declining prices in the cellular-phone, modem, and paging markets. The company expects a "modest recovery" in semiconductors in 1997. Still, Motorola plans cuts in staffing and capital expenditures.EDITED BY KEITH H. HAMMONDSReturn to top

THE RETURN OF CALVIN GRIGSBY

THREE WEEKS AFTER resigning from the municipal-bond firm bearing his name, Calvin Grigsby announced on Oct. 9 that he will return to the business, renamed Grigsby & Associates. Grigsby, who is under investigation in connection with alleged improprieties in a Dade County (Fla.) refinancing, left on Sept. 17. But the subsequent defection of the firm's other senior partners and up to 40 of its 60 employees to rival Muriel Siebert apparently spurred his return. Grigsby couldn't be reached for comment.EDITED BY KEITH H. HAMMONDSReturn to top


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