Arby’s restaurant owner Roark Capital Group will buy Buffalo Wild Wings Inc (BWLD) for $2.4 billion, months after an activist investor won seats on the chicken wing restaurant’s board following a proxy fight demanding management change. Buffalo Wild Wings shares were up 6.6 percent at $156 in premarket trading on Tuesday.
Private equity firm Roark will buy the company for $157 per share, representing a premium of 7.2 percent to the restaurant’s Monday’s close. Roark’s offer is at a 34 percent premium to the Buffalo Wild Wings stock price on Nov. 13, the last trading day before media reports that private equity firm had made an offer of more than $150 per share.
The deal is the latest in a flurry of restaurant takeovers by private equity firms. In October, casual dining chain Ruby Tuesday was bought by NRD Capital for about $335 million, while Luxembourg-based JAB Holdings took U.S. food chains Panera Bread and Krispy Kreme Doughnuts private over the last two years.
Including debt, the Buffalo Wild Wings deal is valued at about $2.9 billion.
Activist hedge fund Marcato Capital Management, which had put pressure on the company to pursue strategies to boost its stock price, said it would vote for the deal.
Marcato, which owns 6.4 percent of Buffalo Wild Wings, won three seats on the company’s board in June after a sustained campaign criticizing its performance under Chief Executive Sally Smith.
Following the deal close, expected during the first quarter of 2018, Buffalo Wild Wings will become a privately held unit of Arby’s and operate as an independent brand.
Barclays served as financial adviser and White & Case LLP as legal adviser to Arby‘s. Goldman Sachs & Co LLC served as financial adviser and Faegre Baker Daniels LLP as legal counsel to Buffalo Wild Wings.
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