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Trump spoke with restaurant company CEOs about coronavirus response


Drive-through customers wait in line at a Chick-fil-A restaurant in Fort Worth, Texas.

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President Donald Trump spoke with executives of the largest U.S. restaurant companies on Tuesday about the national response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Participants on the call with Trump included the CEOs of Domino’s Pizza, Chick-fil-A, Subway, Restaurant Brands International, Bloomin’ Brands, Yum Brands, Darden Restaurants, Papa John’s, Wendy’s and Raising Cane’s. McDonald’s U.S. president was also participated.

The White House said that the executives all committed encouraging customers to use drive-thru, pickup or delivery options. Representatives for the companies did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Trump praised the executives at a late morning briefing Tuesday.

“They have been fantastic,” the president said. “They’re keeping it open, smaller staffs. Very capable people, very capable companies.”

At least 19 states across the country have mandated that restaurants and bars close their dining rooms amid the outbreak. Restaurant companies like Chick-fil-A, McDonald’s and Starbucks have already closed their dining rooms in company-owned locations in the U.S.

Separately, McDonald’s said Tuesday it may offer some franchisees rent deferrals as restaurants close or see traffic plunge. The global fast-food giant also warned that the “negative financial impact” to its results cannot be reasonably estimated at this time.

The chief executives of the International Franchise Association and the National Retail Federation were also on the call, as well as Treasury Secretary Steve Mnunchin and Larry Kudlow, the president’s top economic advisor.

Here are the participants:

Trump administration
President Donald J. Trump
Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Department of the Treasury
Larry Kudlow, Assistant to the President and Director of the National Economic Council
Tim Pataki, Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of the Office of Public Liaison
 
External participants
Richard Allison, CEO, Domino’s Pizza
Dan Cathy, CEO, Chick-fil-A
John Chidsey, CEO, Subway
Jose Cil, CEO, Restaurant Brands International
Robert Cresanti, President and CEO¸ International Franchise Association
David Deno, CEO, Bloomin’ Brands
Joe Erlinger, President, McDonald’s USA
David Gibbs, CEO, YUM! Brands
AJ Kumaran, Co-CEO and COO, Raising Cane’s
Gene Lee, President and CEO, Darden Restaurants
Rob Lynch, CEO, Papa Johns
Todd Penegor, CEO, Wendy’s
Matt Shay, National Retail Federation

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