Roark Capital Group Agrees to Acquire Cinnabon(R) and Seattle's Best Coffee(R) International
-- Addition of two food companies brings private equity firm's total to five
franchise businesses --
ATLANTA, Sept. 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Roark Capital Group, an Atlanta-based private equity firm, announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement through its affiliate Focus Brands Inc. to acquire Cinnabon, the world leader in the cinnamon roll bakery category, from AFC Enterprises, Inc., as well as the franchising rights of Seattle's Best Coffee in Hawaii, on military bases, and in 11 countries. With 592 company operated and franchised bakeries located in 40 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 26 other countries, Cinnabon bakeries serve fresh, aromatic, oven-hot cinnamon rolls made with premium Indonesian cinnamon and topped with a sweet cream cheese-based frosting, and are traditionally located in high-traffic venues such as shopping malls, airports, universities, casinos, amusement parks, military bases, train stations and travel plazas. Seattle's Best Coffee International has 150 locations. "Cinnabon and Seattle's Best Coffee are two highly recognized brands with outstanding consumer appeal, making them perfect additions to our growing portfolio," said Neal Aronson, founder and managing partner of Roark Capital Group. Cinnabon and Seattle's Best Coffee will be added to Carvel Corporation, Roark Capital Group's first food company acquired in November 2001. Considered the nation's first retail ice cream franchise, Carvel is a leading provider of premium soft serve ice cream and ice cream cakes. Carvel President and CEO Steve Romaniello will also oversee these two new brands. "All three of these dynamic brands have experienced steady growth over the last few years," commented Romaniello. "We have come to know, understand, and respect Cinnabon and Seattle's Best Coffee through past relationships, and look forward to bringing all three brands together to make our franchise offerings even more attractive." Further terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close during the fourth quarter of 2004. About Roark Capital Group Roark Capital Group is an Atlanta-based private equity firm that acquires majority stakes in franchise, consumer branded, packaging, niche manufacturing, and service businesses. The firm targets family-owned businesses, assets or divisions of large companies, and going-private transactions of micro-cap public companies. For more information, please visit http://www.roarkcapital.com . About AFC Enterprises AFC Enterprises, Inc. is the franchisor and operator of 4,087 restaurants, bakeries and cafes as of July 11, 2004, in the United States, Puerto Rico and 38 foreign countries under the brand names Popeyes(R) Chicken & Biscuits, Church's Chicken(TM) and Cinnabon(R), and the franchisor of Seattle's Best Coffee(R) in Hawaii, on military bases and internationally. AFC's primary objective is to be the world's Franchisor of Choice(R) by offering investment opportunities in highly recognizable brands and exceptional franchisee support systems and services. AFC Enterprises had system-wide sales of approximately $2.6 billion in 2003 and can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.afce.com . About Carvel The nation's first retail ice cream franchise, Carvel has become one of the best-loved and most recognized names in its industry. The 70-year old company is the leading manufacturer of uniquely shaped ice cream cakes, including its signature Fudgie the Whale and Cookie Puss cakes, as well as a leading provider of premium soft serve and hand dipped ice cream products. Carvel currently operates more than 475 franchised and food service locations and sells its famous ice cream cakes through over 7,500 supermarkets outlets. The Company is based in Atlanta, GA with its supermarket headquarters in Rocky Hill, CT. For more information, visit http://www.carvel.com . Seattle's Best Coffee(R) is a registered trademark of Seattle's Best Coffee, LLC.
SOURCE Roark Capital Group
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