Roark Capital acquires majority of Arby's, Il Fornaio

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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ATLANTA – A definitive agreement has been reached to sell Arby’s Restaurant Group Inc. to Roark Capital Group, an Atlanta-based private equity firm. Wendy’s/Arby’s Group will retain an 18.5% ownership interest in the Arby’s business. The deal is estimated to be valued at $430 million. Roark also acquired Il Fornaio (America) Corp, which owns a chain of 22 California-based Italian restaurants as well as Dallas-based Corner Bakery Café for an undisclosed amount.

“This transaction provides substantial value to our stockholders, as it is expected to be accretive to earnings, deleverage the balance sheet and allow us to devote our full attention and resources on the exciting growth opportunities we have at Wendy’s,” said Roland Smith, president and CEO of Wendy’s/Arby’s Group. The transaction is expected to close early in the third quarter and is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

Mike Hislop, CEO of Il Fornaio (America) Corp., said the Corner Bakery acquisition will allow the chain to expand with new franchisees. “Our ability to leverage Roark’s strong background and extensive resources within the franchise and restaurant industries allows us to better serve our current Corner Bakery Cafe partners, while accelerating our pursuit of new franchisees,” Hislop said in a statement.
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