McDonald’s, the American fast food company, is considering selling part of Dynamic Yield, its artificial intelligence (AI) startup that provides personalized digital promotions to consumers.
The decision-logic technology helps its restaurants vary electronic menu boards’ display of items, depending on factors such as the weather. For instance, it displays more coffee on cold days and McFlurries on hot days. It also factors in variables such as the time of day and regional preferences.
Dynamic Yield has grown since its acquisition and now works with 300 other brands other than McDonald’s globally. The plan under consideration is to sell the part of the business that works with those third parties while keeping the part that serves McDonald’s.
“The potential sale of the non-McDonald’s part of our business has been discussed from the outset and now feels like the right time to explore that possibility. We look forward to our continued relationship while continuing to expand the use of Dynamic Yield’s technology at McDonald’s restaurants around the world,” McDonald’s said in a statement.
The plan is in the early stages and the chain may pursue other options for Dynamic Yield, which it bought two years ago for more than $300 million, marking its largest acquisition in decades. Following the acquisition of Dynamic Yield, McDonald’s executives called it a central part of the company’s evolving digital strategy.
The restaurant shut down necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic had led to a significant drop in McDonald’s global same-store sales which caused it to missed profit estimates for the year 2020. During the period the globally popular restaurant chain was forced to restrict its operations to drive-thru and delivery only and is currently in the process of getting back on its feet.