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We are investing in the future of McDonald’s through the agreement to acquire Apprente, a voice-based tech start-up

September 10, 2019

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Here’s everything you need to know.


1. We have entered into an agreement to acquire Apprente, a Silicon Valley-based start-up.

Founded in 2017, Apprente is a leader in the field of conversational voice-based technology. This will give us first-mover advantage as we continue to build a better McDonald’s.

  Animation: We’re making investments to better our restaurants. Next stop: McD Tech Labs


2. Apprente’s technology will allow for faster, simpler and more accurate ordering at the Drive Thru.

We are committed to developing high quality, positive and personalized experiences to meet rising expectations – both for customers and restaurant employees.

3. Apprente employees will become part of McDonald’s Global Technology team.

The addition of the Apprente team will further strengthen McDonald’s in-house technology team, bringing world-class talent to the table. Their staff includes employees with PhDs in machine learning and computational linguistics, with a dedicated focus on voice technology.

McDonald's & Apprente logo

4. The Apprente team will be the founding members of the McD Tech Labs as we expand our presence in Silicon Valley.

The Apprente team will form a new, internal, integrated team called McD Tech Labs. This team will complement and provide synergies with the work being done at our newly renovated Innovation Center just outside of Chicago. And as our needs grow, so will this team – bringing new skillsets into McDonald’s as we build on our commitment to meet customers and crew on their terms.

5. The new voice tech will initially focus on Drive Thru... but we believe that it has broader capabilities.

The initial focus of the Silicon Valley team will be to enhance technology for use in McDonald’s Drive Thru. However, we believe that the broader voice-based technology also has the potential to reach customers when, where and how they want through incorporation into mobile ordering or kiosks.


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6. It is our mission to embody a Culture of Innovation. This is another step in that direction.

This latest investment in advanced technology capabilities and talent builds on several key initiatives the company has introduced over the last three years to improve both the restaurant employee and customer experience, from the acquisition of Dynamic Yield, to the expansion of McDelivery, as well as the development of McDonald’s Global Mobile App, Mobile Order and Pay, indoor and outdoor digital menu boards, and self-order kiosks.

With this move, we’re investing in the talent and technology that will ultimately make our customer and restaurant employee experience better.

As we all know, technology can change by the day. And with that, so do our customers’ expectations. We are committed to delivering the best possible experience for restaurant crew and our customers. And this is only the beginning...