No. The Founder true story reveals that Richard and Mac McDonald had already sold more than 20 franchises and opened eight restaurants themselves by the time they met Ray Kroc. In 1954, Kroc got wind that the brothers were looking for help expanding, so he offered to buy the U.S. franchise rights. -Sun Journal
Yes. Ethel had opposed his decision to start selling milkshake machines, believing he was giving up a good job and was too old (35) to start a new career. His obsession with work only intensified after he met the McDonald brothers. He and his wife Ethel divorced in 1961, the same year he spent $2.7 million to buy out the brothers’ stake in the company. -Grinding It Out: The Making of McDonald’s
Kroc was 52 when he found success with McDonald’s. When teased that he was an overnight success at the age of 52, Kroc reminded people of the long road it took to get there, “I was an overnight success alright, but 30 years is a long, long night.” Before McDonald’s, Kroc had worked as a piano player, a paper cup salesman, and a Multimixer salesman, the latter being the job that introduced him to the McDonald brothers, Dick and Maurice. -McDonalds
Dick and Mac McDonald didn’t have any interest in doing it themselves. Ray Kroc suggested that he try to do it for them and they were open to the idea, having just lost their previous franchising agent due to health issues.
Yes. Though it’s not focused on in the movie, before Ray Kroc could open his first McDonald’s in Des Plaines, Illinois, he had to buy out the Frejlack Ice Cream Company’s contract for $25,000. It was an added expense that he could barely afford. The cost was even harder to swallow since Frejlack had only paid $5,000 for the contract. -Grinding It Out: The Making of McDonald’s
As he successfully unleashed the true franchising potential of the chain, Ray Kroc introduced standardization, automation and discipline. Franchise owners were carefully selected for their work ethic and ambition. They attended “Hamburger University” in Elk Grove, Illinois where they were put through a training course, earning certificates in “hamburgerology with a minor in french fries.” However, like in The Founder movie, the true story confirms that the golden arches and the sign that states how many hamburgers have been sold were both Richard McDonald’s ideas, not Kroc’s. -McDonalds
Yes. Ray was so eager to see the restaurant expand, he had made a hasty deal with the brothers. As Ray sold the franchises, the brothers made a lot of money for doing nothing. Like in The Founder movie, Ray met Harry Sonneborn (played by B.J. Novak), a financial expert who showed him another way of making money off the deal that would not involve selling hamburgers (BBC McDonald’s Documentary). It involved creating a real estate company that would buy up (or lease) the land on which all McDonald’s would be located. Then, franchisees would pay Kroc a monthly rental fee for the land or a percentage of their sales, whichever was greater. Kroc started the Franchise Realty Corporation in order to execute the plan. -Ray Kroc: The Vision that Revolutionized the World