McDonald’s to focus on more personalized drive-thru experience

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McDonald's Corp. just announced its biggest acquisition in two decades.

U.S. fast food giant McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD) has announced an agreement to acquire Israeli AI startup Dynamic Yield, which develops personalization and decision logic technology.

The fast-food chain is reportedly acquiring a Tel Aviv-based big data firm Dynamic Yield.

McDonald's said it will keep Dynamic Yield as an independent company and will continue to invest in the company's platform. Testing of the tech in 2018 was a success, so this year customers in the US can expect more bespoke menus.

McDonald's customers who interact with digital outdoor/indoor menus and kiosks with be given a personalized menu, based on time of day, weather, how busy the restaurant is, and popular menu items. At the end of 2018, it had deployed self-ordering kiosks to about 17,000 restaurants, brought digital menu boards to 21,000 restaurants and added its order and pay app to 22,000 restaurants, according to the company's annual report. It's said that one in eight Americans have worked at the company, which is perhaps one of the reasons 2020 Democratic Presidential candidate Andrew Yang is pushing for a universal basic income.

With the agreement, McDonald's becomes the sole owner of Dynamic Yield, which is based in NY and Tel Aviv.

This acquisition is aimed at not only increasing the use of technology in the fast food market but also to achieve the vision of creating personalized experiences for the customers.

The acquisition will fast-track McDonald's digital transformation but it doesn't mean the company is overthinking things.

"Technology is a critical element of our Velocity Growth Plan, enhancing the experience for our customers by providing greater convenience on their terms", said McDonald's Corporation president and CEO Steve Easterbrook.

The company is traded at a market cap of about 142 billion US dollars on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Additionally, the decision technology can also suggest additional items to add to a customer's order based on their current selections. Or, as Dynamic Yield's next-gen plan puts it: the same capabilities driving massive revenue growth online will expand into the physical world, connecting consumers and brands across a whole new set of modern digital interfaces.