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This Mega Deal Means Carl's Jr. and Hardee's Are Now in the Same Family as Arby's, Auntie Anne's and Cinnabon

Roark Capital Group will acquire CKE Inc., the parent company of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, adding to its extensive franchise brand portfolio, which includes Wingstop, Carvel Ice Cream and Arby's.
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Call it a melding of food-court favorites.

Roark Capital Group, a private equity firm whose investments include Arby’s, Auntie Anne’s and Cinnabon, inked a deal Tuesday  to acquire CKE Inc., the parent of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s

CKE is currently owned by Apollo Global Management, LLC, a private equity firm that also owns accessories retailer Claire’s, public gaming corporation Caesars Entertainment and Norwegian Cruise Line.

The deal values CKE somewhere between $1.65 and $1.75 billion, Reuters reports, citing people familiar with the matter. CKE and Roark have not revealed the financial terms of the deal.

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“We’re looking forward to our long-term partnership with Roark Capital Group,” Andy Puxder, CKE’s CEO said in a statement. “Their proven track record of success and deep expertise in the restaurant and franchise sectors will be very beneficial as we continue to grow and expand CKE’s market-leading brands around the world.”

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2013.

CKE has 3,400 franchised or company-owned restaurants in 42 states and 29 countries and territories. CKE is Roark’s 14th restaurant investment, joining the ranks of Arby’s, Auntie Anne’s and Cinnabon.

With the investment, Roark’s franchise brand portfolio will encompass 27 companies that collectively have more than 15,000 locations across all 50 states and 68 countries. Roark’s total locations include nearly 13,000 franchise locations operated by 4,200 franchisees and 2,300 company-owned locations.

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