Restaurant Brands to buy Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen for $1.8 bn

Burger King owner Restaurant Brands International Inc yesterday struck a deal to buy Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen Inc, for $1.8 billion in cash.

Under the terms of the agreed deal, Restaurant Brands will pay $79 per share, a 19.5-per cent premium to Popeyes Friday close.

Restaurant Brands will fund the deal with cash on hand and a financing commitment from JP Morgan and Wells Fargo.

"Popeyes is a powerful brand with a rich Louisiana heritage that resonates with guests around the world. With this transaction, RBI is adding a brand that has a distinctive position within a compelling segment and strong US and international prospects for growth,'' said, Daniel Schwartz, CEO of Restaurant Brands.

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Popeyes is the world's second largest quick-service chicken chain based on number of units.

Founded in 1992 as AFC Enterprises, Inc, Popeyes operates and franchises quick-service restaurants under the trade name, Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen and Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits.

AFC Enterprises changed its corporate name in 2014 to Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen and the chain distinguishes itself with a unique New Orleans style menu that features spicy chicken, chicken tenders, fried shrimp and other seafood, as well as jambalaya, red beans and rice and other regional items.

The company operates and franchises over 2,600 Popeyes restaurants worldwide. Of the 1,600 local franchised restaurants, around 70 per cent are concentrated in Texas, California, Louisiana, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, New York, Georgia, Virginia and Mississippi.

It has nearly 400 international franchised restaurants that are located in the Bahamas, Bahrain, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Northern Cyprus, Republic of Georgia, Germany, Guyana, Honduras, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Mexico, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Suriname, Trinidad, Turkey, Vietnam, and United Arab Emirates.

Restaurant Brands is a Canadian multinational fast food company, which was formed by the $11.5 billion merger between Burger King and Canadian fast-food chain Tim Hortons. (See: Burger King to buy Canadian fast-food chain Tim Hortons for $11.5 bn) The Ontario-based company is the world's third-largest operator of fast food restaurants. Restaurant Brands is majority-owned by the Brazilian private equity firm 3G Capital.

It has over 20,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries including the US.