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Fate of 169 McDonald’s outlets uncertain,

LiveMint logoLiveMint 05-09-2017 PTI

New Delhi: The board of Connaught Plaza Restaurant Ltd (CPRL), the 50:50 joint venture between McDonald’s India and its estranged partner Vikram Bakshi, will meet tomorrow amid uncertainty over the fate of 169 outlets of the fast food chain run by it.

McDonald’s India, which had cancelled license agreement with CPRL in August, said the termination notice period ends on Tuesday after which the franchisee is not “authorised to use the McDonald’s system and its intellectual property”.

On the other hand, Bakshi reiterated that the CPRL board will decide on the future course of action in its meeting tomorrow to be presided by National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT)-appointed administrator justice G.S. Singhvi.

“We are having our board meeting tomorrow under the chairmanship of the administrator in which the two nominee directors of McDonald’s Corporation would also participate,” Bakshi told PTI.

In the previous two board meetings in August, McDonald’s representatives had stayed away.

When contacted McDonald’s India spokesperson said: “The termination notice period ends today (5 September). Therefore, CPRL is no longer authorised to use the McDonald’s system and its intellectual property”. They will have to stop using the McDonald’s names, trademarks, designs, branding, operational and marketing practise and policies, and food recipes and specifications, he said.

“We are proceeding with exercising our legal and contractual rights,” the spokesperson added.

McDonald’s India had cancelled license agreement with CPRL in August for 169 outlets in north and east India and asked to stop using the McDonald’s trademarks, branding, food recipes and specifications, among others from 6 September.

Already 43 outlets of McDonald’s in Delhi have been closed since June following expiry of eating house license. Meanwhile, the NCLT issued showcause notice to fast food major McDonald’s Corporation and its Indian arm over the contempt plea filed by Bakshi.

Besides, the tribunal dismissed another plea by Bakshi challenging termination of the franchise license of 169 outlets by McDonald’s run by CPRL.

Bakshi has been at loggerheads with the fast food chain over the management of CPRL after he was ousted from the post of managing director of the McDonald’s franchisee in August 2013.

McDonald’s India had asked CPRL not to use its brand system, trademark, designs and its associated intellectual property, among others, within 15 days of the termination notice which gets over on Tuesday. Bakshi had moved the NCLT following termination of license by McDonald’s India Pvt Ltd (MIPL).

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