Rebranded McDonald's set to open in Russia

STORY: Russia has already said goodbye to the golden arches.

McDonald’s has pulled out of the country following the conflict in Ukraine.

Now Sunday (June 12) will be a big day for the country’s burger lovers.

The former McDonald’s stores are due to reopen under new ownership and new branding.

A new logo is supposed to represent two fries and a burger patty, though the chain doesn’t yet have a name.

The reopening will initially cover 15 locations in and around Moscow.

Vaasa University marketing expert Peter Gabrielsson says there’s a lot riding on day one:

“So, in this type of consumer products we are talking about repeat purchases being everything. So, they have to have this very great feeling from this first visit to then come again.”

It’s all a far cry from 1990, when Russia’s first McDonald’s opened in Moscow.

It was a moment that symbolised the country’s gradual opening to the world.

The U.S. giant went on to operate nearly 850 stores in Russia.

It’s taken a charge of $1.4 billion after selling them to local licensee Alexander Govor.

McDonald’s retains a right to buy the stores back within 15 years, though the terms of its sale deal are unclear.

For now, the rebranding also looks like a moment heavy with symbolism.

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