Brands International Inc, owner of the Burger King and Tim Hortons
fast-food chains, is nearing a deal to acquire Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen
Inc, people familiar with the matter said on Monday.
deal, which will likely value Popeyes at more than $1.7 billion, is a
bet by Oakville, Ontario-based Restaurant Brands that it can use its
international reach to introduce Popeyes' Louisiana-style fried chicken
and buttermilk biscuits to more diners globally.
also represents a small consolation prize for Restaurant Brands
shareholder 3G Capital, which lost a $143 billion bid this week to merge
its biggest holding, food conglomerate Kraft Heinz Co, with consumer
products firm Unilever Plc.
deal could be announced as early as this week, the people said, asking
not to be identified because the negotiations are confidential.
Restaurant Brands did not respond immediately to a request for comment,
while Popeyes decline to comment.
whose fans include pop singer Beyoncé, began 45 years ago as a
Southern-fried "Chicken on the Run" restaurant in a New Orleans suburb.
It has since expanded to more than 2,000 restaurants, of which 1,600 are
in the United States.
The company has benefited from strong customer loyalty, as well as from a restaurant refurbishment program.
Popeye's operates a number of outlets in Jamaica, through the same company, Restaurant Associates, that is the local franchisee for Burger King and, most recently, Little Caesar's Pizza