Fastfood company McDonald's plans to sell off a minority stake in its Chipotle Mexican Grill chain.

"Earlier this year we began evaluating strategic alternatives for Chipotle Mexican Grill," said CEO Jim Skinner in a statement. "We've determined an initial public offering of a minority interest in this emerging, popular fast-casual brand is most appropriate. We expect to file for an IPO by the end of October, and launch the offering sometime in the first quarter of 2006. This action will optimize Chipotle's potential and create additional value for McDonald's shareholders."

"I am pleased to report that McDonald's 'Plan to Win' continues to deliver results for customers and shareholders alike," Skinner said. "Since we implemented our revitalization plan in early 2003, we have further strengthened McDonald's leading position in the global eating out marketplace."

"Today, I am pleased to announce that McDonald's Board of Directors has approved a 22% increase to the company's annual dividend, bringing the total dividend payout to more than $825m," he said.