McDonald’s Japan shares jump 23pc as diners flock for ‘Pokemon’ toys


Fast food franchise, McDonald’s Holdings Co. (Japan) saw its shares jump as much as 23 per cent after it started giving away figurines based on the popular fictional ‘Pokemon’ characters with sales of their ‘Happy Meal’ product on Friday.

Tech company Nintendo Co.’s mobile game ‘Pokemon Go’, which has sparked a worldwide frenzy, still isn’t available in Japan where the franchise’s cartoon series was first created.

“Investors are flocking to Pokemon-related stocks and McDonald’s Japan is one of those benefiting from the boom,” said Mitsushige Akino, a Tokyo-based executive officer at Ichiyoshi Asset Management Co.

“The boom came at a time when McDonald’s business has already started recovering and there’s expectation that the Pokemon toy offering will further increase customer traffic to their shops,” Mitsushige added.

After a rally lasting more than a week, Nintendo has pushed its market value past rival tech maker Sony Corp., fuelled by a global craze for the Pokemon Go game it backed.

Bloomberg’s analysts say that for the Japan unit of McDonald’s Corp., riding on the game’s popularity may further boost the hamburger chain’s recovery from a series of food safety scandals, according to Akino.

Shares in the Japan unit of McDonald’s Corp. rose 9.9 per cent to 3,340 yen (Sh3,200) as of 11:00 a.m. in Tokyo trading onTuesday. The 23 per cent jump earlier was the biggest daily gain since its July 2001 listing. The benchmark Topix index rose 0.2 percent.

Pokemon Go’s launch in Japan has been delayed because the server capacity in the country is not powerful enough to keep up with expected demand, Forbes reported July 15, citing John Hanke, CEO of Pokémon GO developer Niantic Inc.

To contact the reporter on this story: Monami Yui in Tokyo at To contact the editors responsible for this story: K. Oanh Ha at Daryl Loo COPYRIGHT

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