McDonald’s and Krispy Kreme Look to Expand Partnership

Around 160 McDonald’s locations currently offer Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

November 10, 2023

Krispy Kreme announced that it is in talks with McDonald’s to expand their current partnership, reported CNBC News.

In October of 2022, the companies announced their partnership. McDonald’s began selling Krispy Kreme doughnuts—original glazed, chocolate iced with sprinkles and raspberry filled—at nine locations in Louisville, Kentucky.

According to CNBC News, the pilot had quickly expanded by March 2023 to around 160 McDonald’s locations across Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky. The test was meant to understand customer demand and how restaurant operations would be affected by a larger-scale launch.

Incoming Krispy Kreme CEO Josh Charlesworth said the discussions with McDonald’s have touched on Krispy Kreme’s ability to deliver it doughnuts fresh and on time, what scale is needed to expand beyond Kentucky and the commercial viability of the partnership, as noted by CNBC News.

Through the partnership, Charlesworth said that the company has learned that fast-food consumers behave similarly to the consumers at Krispy Kreme’s own retail locations.

“We’ve seen that both the loose doughnuts and the pre-packed doughnuts are well received,” Charlesworth told analysts during a call.

McDonald’s has been leaning into coffee to encourage customers to visit more often, reported CNBC News. This year, the company removed baked goods from its McCafé menu.

In October, Krispy Kreme announced that it was exploring options for its Insomnia Cookies operation, including a sale. The company is looking to refocus on its core strategy of producing, selling and distributing fresh doughnuts daily.