Dine Brands Global Inc., the franchisor of Applebee’s Grill + Bar and IHOP restaurants, is purchasingFuzzy’s Taco Shop from NRD Capital Management for $80 million.
“This transaction is a textbook example of how NRD identifies and grows brands, which can result in successful outcomes for all stakeholders, including company management, company employees, franchisees and investors of NRD Capital,” Aziz Hashim, NRD managing partner, said in a company press release. “NRD is incredibly proud of the work it has done alongside the talented Fuzzy’s Taco Shop team to drive growth and propel value creation.”
Fuzzy’s, which has 138 franchise- and corporate-owned locations in 18 states, was founded in 2003 in Fort Worth, Texas. In 2016, NRD acquired a majority stake and helped founder Mel Knight nearly double the unit count while improving underlying unit-level economics for franchisees.
“We had many options when evaluating the ideal partner to help accelerate the growth of Fuzzy’s Taco Shop,” Knight said in the release. “We selected NRD because of their operator-centric mentality, flexible capital and unparalleled franchising experience. Without a doubt, they over-delivered on each promise and initiative. Partnering with NRD to improve our unit-level economics and supercharge franchise development was instrumental in leading Fuzzy’s to be the successful national brand that it is today.”
Arlington Capital Advisors served as the exclusive financial adviser to Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, with Cheng Cohen LLC serving as legal adviser. Centerview Partners LLC served as the financial adviser to Dine Brands, with Sidley Austin LLP serving as the legal adviser.