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McDonald’s to sell Nordic restaurants to Terra Firma founder: Reuters

The world’s largest fast-food retailer McDonald’s Corp said it would sell its Nordic restaurants to British equity firm Terra Firma Capital Partners Ltd’s founder and chairman Guy Hands as part of a turnaround plan it had previously announced.

Hands will become the developmental licensee, or the franchiser, for McDonald’s 435 restaurants in Denmark, Norway, Finland and Sweden, the burger chain said in a statement on Friday.

McDonald’s had said in 2015 that it would refranchise 4,000 restaurants worldwide by the end of next year to become 95 percent franchised.

Hands, through the McDonald’s license and transfer of ownership, will operate the company’s Nordic restaurants, out of which more than 95 percent are already franchised.

McDonald’s said in December it had sold its ownership interest in more than 390 restaurants in Singapore and Malaysia to Saudi Arabia’s Lionhorn Pte Ltd, as part of a larger plan to move away from direct ownership in Asia.

The Nordic deal comes as McDonald’s agreed earlier this month to sell most of its assets in China and Hong Kong to state-backed conglomerate CITIC Ltd and Carlyle Group LP for up to $2.1 billion, while it retained a 20 percent stake to benefit from exposure to future growth in China.