A look back at McDonald’s 50 years of franchising in Canada. Find out how you can become a franchisee with McDonald’s at the FranchiseCanada Show in Vancouver this November 4 & 5.

Pre-register now

McDonald’s franchisee Joe Guizzo stands in front of the iconic Golden Arches outside his restaurant in Richmond, BC – the first McDonald’s in Canada

By the time McDonald’s iconic Golden Arches arrived in Canada in 1967, it was already an established brand in the United States, with more than 700 locations. The first Canadian location opened in Richmond, British Columbia in June 1967.

That location, now owned by multi-unit franchisee Joe Guzzo, was recently renovated to reflect McDonald’s modern new look, with stone and wood finishes and self-order kiosks. The restaurant reopened in June 2017 after a six month renovation – just in time for its 50th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the restaurant’s original Golden Arches were returned to the site.

“Returning the iconic Golden Arches to their original home is a very special moment, and one that we are happy to share with the community, residents, and long-time guests,” Guzzo said during the reopening celebration.

Guzzo began his career with McDonald’s over four decades ago, at Alpha and Hastings in Burnaby, BC, first as an employee and now as a multi-unit franchisee with 13 locations. “I’m thrilled to build on the rich history that this location has by modernizing the restaurant and the experience for all our guests.”

The reopening of the first McDonald’s in Canada was just one of the ways the franchise celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. In June, the company held a convention in Toronto attended by over 2,300 franchisees, including George Cohon, the founder of McDonald’s Canada.

McDonald’s Canada has undergone many changes since Cohon opened his first restaurant 50 years ago. While you can still find classic offerings like the Big Mac on the menu, customers today can now order salads and other healthy options, along with premium ingredients.

Reflecting this, the theme of McDonald’s 50th anniversary convention was “constant evolution,” and that has been key to the brand’s success over the years. That and the win-win relationship between head office and their franchisees. “We have a saying at McDonald’s,” says Cohon. “‘None of us is as good as all of us.’ I can’t think of a better way to communicate the power of franchising. Our strength truly does lie in the sum of our parts.”

Be part of McDonald’s success story! Meet with representatives from McDonald’s Canada this November 4 and 5 at the Vancouver Convention Centre and learn about the brand’s expansion plans in Western Canada.

Click here to pre-register and save $5 on tickets!