McDonald’s, the US-based fast food giant, is set to take over the 165 outlets in the north and east India that are currently being run by Vikram Bakshi’s Connaught Plaza Restaurant Ltd (CPRL), the Times of India reported.
They on Monday told the NCLAT that they are working towards an out-of-court settlement to end their over 5-year-old dispute.
The independent Counsels for both McDonald’s India Pvt Ltd and Vikram Bakshi told a two-member National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) bench, that is headed by the Chairperson S J Mukhopadhyay, that they are in continuous to work out a settlement.
The bench directed that either of the parties may file an affidavit including the terms of the aforesaid settlement being arrived at on the next date of hearing on May 13.
In 1995, McDonald’s had inked a 25-year partnership agreement with Bakshi to open its outlets in India in the North and East. At that time, the partnership was a mere 50:50 venture between McDonald’s India and Bakshi’s Connaught Plaza Restaurant Ltd (CPRL), wherein the latter would be responsible for both opening and managing outlets of the US fast food chain across the country.
In August 2013, Bakshi was removed as the managing director of the joint venture, triggering the acrimonious legal battle. Bakshi challenged his ouster at the Company Law Board (now National Company Law Tribunal), alleging McDonald’s India of mismanagement and oppression.
Later in 2017, McDonald’s terminated CPRL‘s franchise agreement citing the non-payment of royalties.
A long-lasting legal tussle and battle for control of the business has ensued afterward with Bakshi keeping around 165 McDonald’s branded outlets that are currently operational in the northern and the eastern regions of the country.
In the far southern and western regions, McDonald’s outlets are being run by Amit Jatia-led Westlife Development.