Mon, Aug 8, 2022 6:00 AM

Blood is thicker than ketchup


Tessa Jaine

Moving to Blenheim and taking on a McDonald’s franchise was a substantial change for Dan and Keri Maas.

Dan’s father, Wilhelm Maas, was a franchisee for twenty-five years, the last five of those in Blenheim. “I was always conscious of the opportunity to follow in the family footsteps, but until Covid hit, my digital marketing career had always taken precedence,” says Dan. “The vulnerability of the world had us thinking about the opportunities McDonald’s offered, being one of the world’s most trusted brands. With my father nearing retirement we made the decision to begin the programme,” he says. “It was a big leap of faith because the two years of training was very intense with no guarantee of the outcome.”

That faith paid off. “I soon realised the programme offered so much in terms of business and leadership development and once qualified, we were able to make our Blenheim move a reality,” says Dan.


“We feel like Marlborough is the jewel in Aotearoa’s crown,” Keri says. “We love climbing the hills, exploring the Marlborough Sounds, and enjoying all the amazing vineyards. From a family perspective, we think that we will always look back at this being the best family decision we may ever make. Swapping a sixty-minute commute for a six-minute one has given us so much more time to put back into our girls Saskia (5) and Demi (3).”

Keri has continued her career as a cardiac physiologist at Wairau Hospital, as well as being a barista in the bustling McCafe. “Not only is it awesome to do this business as a couple,” Keri continues, “but it is hugely rewarding working with so many great people. We have eighty employees and knowing that we can make a difference to their career development through our platforms is fantastic.”

The couple are proud to be local business owners in Marlborough. “We also love that McDonalds sources most of its ingredients from New Zealand,” says Dan. “Our patties are 100% quality NZ beef, apples come from Hawkes Bay, potatoes from Canterbury, eggs from Whangarei, tomatoes from Pukekohe, lettuce from Franklin and fish from Talley’s in Motueka,” to name a few.

Dan and Keri are passionate about supporting the community. “In our short time here, we have already been working with Inspire, MBC Rugby, MGC & Harlequins netball, primary schools and RMHC” says Dan. “We encourage the community to come to us with ideas and are excited about being involved in more local initiatives.”

For anyone looking to go out on their own, Dan and Keri have some advice. “If you are presented an opportunity, just go for it as you only live once.”

McDonald’s Marlborough, Cnr Freswick and Main Street, Blenheim

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