Burger King, Popeye's parent Restaurant Brands International to acquire Firehouse Subs for $1 billion

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Burger King, Popeye's and Tim Hortons parent Restaurant Brands International will add Firehouse Subs to its portfolio in an all-cash deal for $1 billion. 

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RBI said in a statement Monday that the transaction will offer "significant long-term unit growth potential to drive attractive returns for all stakeholders and is expected to be immediately accretive to RBI's diluted net earnings per share." 

"We see tremendous potential to accelerate U.S. and international growth at Firehouse Subs with RBI's development expertise, global franchisee network and digital capabilities," RBI CEO José Cil said in a statement. "We are excited to welcome the Firehouse Subs team to the RBI family and to continue our ambitious dream of building the world's most loved restaurant brands."


Firehouse Subs, founded in Jacksonville, Florida in 1994 by brothers and former firefighters Chris and Robin Sorensen, is frequently rated the #1 brand in the quick service restaurant (QSR) sandwich category for food quality and has one of the strongest-brand love ratings in its category. 

The Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation has granted $62.5 million to public safety organizations across 49 U.S. states, Puerto Rico and Canada. 

Lexington, Kentucky-December 30, 2017: Firehouse Subs is a chain of fast casual restaurants started by 2 former firemen. They have over 1100 branches throughout the USA, Puerto Rico, Canada and Mexico. (iStock) (iStock)

Firehouse Subs, which has grown to a total of approximately 1,200 locations, is expecting to generate approximately $1.1 billion in system-wide sales in 2021. In the first ten months of 2021, the company's U.S. comparable sales jumped 20% versus the same period in 2019. 

In addition, the brand's loyalty program boasts nearly 3.5 million subscribers, enrolling approximately 50,000 additional customers per month and representing over 10% of transactions.


Following the closing of the transaction, Firehouse Subs will remain based in Jacksonville and will continue to be managed by CEO Don Fox and chief financial officer Vincent Burchianti.

"At Firehouse Subs we are united in our commitment to and passion for hearty and flavorful food, heartfelt service, and public safety," Fox said. "Joining the RBI family of brands provides an energizing opportunity to assist more communities, not only across America and Canada, but around the globe." 

The transaction, which will be funded by RBI through a combination of cash on hand and debt, is expected to close in the coming months, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. 

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