Nov 3, 2019

McDonald's fires CEO over consensual relationship with employee

Steve Easterbrook. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

McDonald's announced Sunday that it has fired CEO Steve Easterbrook after investigating a consensual relationship he had with an unnamed employee, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: The fast-food giant did not provide details about the relationship, but Easterbrook said in an email to employees that his conduct had violated company policy. "This was a mistake," Easterbrook wrote. "Given the values of the company, I agree with the board that it is time for me to move on."

Between the lines: Ever since the #MeToo movement picked up two years ago, companies have become much more active in enforcing policies around sexual harassment and employee relationships. McDonald's personal conduct policy does not allow managers to have romantic relationships with "direct or indirect reports," according to AP.

What's next: The board of McDonald's has named Chris Kempczinski, who most recently served as president of McDonald's USA, as the company's new president and CEO.

Go deeper: Fast food's digital revolution is bringing all-time high stock prices

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Restaurants adapt to the era of food delivery apps

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Fast food chains around the country are changing the physical structure of their restaurants to adapt to the era of food delivery apps such as Uber Eats and GrubHub Inc., Reuters reports.

Why it matters: The increase in digital orders has become a "major growth area" for chains, and it helps them save on labor and real estate costs, per Reuters. As such, chains, like Chopt and Chick-fil-A, are getting rid of tables and cash registers.

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Keep ReadingArrowNov 16, 2019

The 2020 corporate hit list

Data: High Lantern Group; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Presidential candidates have called out more than 80 companies across 30 industries on Twitter over the past six months — mostly in a negative context — according to data compiled by High Lantern Group and provided exclusively to Axios.

Why it matters: From Amazon to Lyft, many of these companies are facing populist attacks from candidates including Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren on the left — but also from the right by President Trump, who's lashing out over his own issues.

Go deeperArrowNov 27, 2019

Report: Alphabet board to investigate handling of sexual misconduct

Photo: Tobias Schwarz/AFP via Getty Images

Alphabet's board of directors has reportedly hired a law firm to help an investigation into the handling of claims of sexual misconduct by executives, including by chief legal officer David Drummond, according to CNBC.

Why it matters: The company has been mum about Drummond, who has denied having relationships with employees other than one with whom he had a child. He is among the executives featured in a lengthy report from the New York Times a year ago about sexual harassment and large exit payments doled out by the company despite credible allegations.

Go deeperArrowNov 6, 2019