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KFC’s Fried Chicken Shortage Cost the Colonel Some Serious Coin

Closing over 600 restaurants after DHL’s delivery nightmare sunk the fried chicken magnate’s profits

KFC sent out material after DHL lost its chicken @A1GOY/Twitter

Fried chicken restaurants that run out of chicken do not make money

In February 2018, KFC ran out of chicken. The fried chicken restaurant giant switched its poultry delivery to logistics company DHL, there were — serious — teething problems, and over 600 KFCs closed across the U.K. because they had no chicken to serve. With the publication of that year’s financial results, a simple truth emerges: a fried chicken restaurant without any chicken is not a moneymaker.

KFC’s like-for-like sales to year ending 23 December 2018 fell 4.8 percent, while turnover fell from £445.8 million to £207.4 million. No, closing a few restaurants didn’t halve turnover: that’s a focus on refranchising, according to Propel. Recovery meant that sales growth for the year ended up in the black, but the message is clear: don’t risk a key supply chain without mitigation ready to go. [Propel]

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