McDonald’s is creating a spinoff restaurant brand called CosMc’s

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1980s McDonald’s Commercial screenshot featuring CosMc.
Source: McDonald’s | YouTube

McDonald’s is creating a spinoff restaurant chain called CosMc’s, executives said Thursday.

The fast-food giant shared few details about the project during its second-quarter earnings call.

“CosMc’s is a small format concept with all the DNA of McDonald’s, but with its own unique personality,” McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski said.

The company will test CosMc’s in a handful of sites in “a limited geography” in early 2024. McDonald’s said it will share more details about those plans at its investor day in December.

The name for the new brand comes from CosMc, a McDonaldland mascot who appeared in advertisements in the late 1980s and early 1990s. CosMc is an alien from outer space who craves McDonald’s food.

The brand will revive CosMc after the return of another McDonald’s mascot, Grimace, jolted its U.S. business. In June, the burger chain introduced the Grimace Birthday Meal, which included a bright purple milkshake.

Grimace and his combo meal went viral on social media, driving traffic and sales for U.S. restaurants.

“This quarter, if I’m being honest, the theme was Grimace,” Kempczinski said.

McDonald’s past endeavors to expand beyond its primary business haven’t been successful. In the late 1990’s, it bought Donatos Pizza and Boston Market and a stake in a fledgling Chipotle Mexican Grill.

Less than a decade later, it had divested from all three, which had become distractions as McDonald’s struggled. Chipotle and McDonald’s also butted heads over franchising plans and drive-thru lanes.

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