GLENDALE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Dine Brands Global, Inc. (NYSE: DIN), the parent company of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar and IHOP restaurants, today announced that it has agreed to acquire Fuzzy’s Taco Shop (“Fuzzy’s”) from Experiential Brands LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of NRD Holding Company, for $80 million in cash. Fuzzy’s is a fast-casual restaurant concept serving Mexican favorites with a Baja twist. The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings. Net of tax benefits, the purchase price is approximately $70 million.
Founded in 2003 in Fort Worth, Texas, Fuzzy’s is a category innovator, offering a new twist on Mexican favorites at a value price point. With a clearly defined and compelling brand, Fuzzy’s is competitively differentiated with strong consumer awareness and net promoter scores. Fuzzy’s is led by a strong management team, including Chief Executive Officer Paul Damico, a 35-year industry veteran at FOCUS Brands, Moe’s Southwest Grill, and Global Franchise Group. Paul has been successful in the sustained growth of the brand and will continue to drive the future of Fuzzy’s under the Dine Brands umbrella.
“Fuzzy’s Taco Shop is a compelling business with a loyal customer base and a distinct identity. It is an attractive asset with a tremendous growth trajectory and will be a complementary addition to our highly franchised portfolio,” said John Peyton, Chief Executive Officer of Dine Brands. “By adding Fuzzy’s to the Dine Brands family, we are investing in a high growth concept as part of our longer-term growth agenda, which is aligned with our strategy to build shareholder value.”
Peyton continued, “Paul and his team have done a tremendous job creating a solid foundation for the business, as evidenced by its attractive financial profile and differentiated brand positioning within its segment. We are eager to work with Paul and his leadership team as we execute on accelerating Fuzzy’s growth.”
Fuzzy’s, with 138 restaurants in 18 states, has long-term development agreements currently in place to nearly double its current restaurant base over time. 98% of Fuzzy’s current system is franchised and its strong unit economics attract franchisees to open more restaurants. The brand is expected to generate approximately $230 million in systemwide sales in 2022.
A supplemental presentation with more details on the transaction is available at investors.dinebrands.com.
“I’m incredibly proud of the work the Fuzzy’s team and franchisees have accomplished over the past few years, which has enabled us to enter this new chapter of growth together with Dine Brands,” said Paul Damico, CEO of Fuzzy’s Taco Shop. “With Dine Brands’ substantial industry resources, we will be well positioned to build upon our proven successes and accelerate our growth.”
Centerview Partners LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Sidley Austin LLP acted as legal advisor to Dine Brands on the transaction. Arlington Capital Advisors served as exclusive financial advisor to Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and Cheng Cohen LLC served as legal advisor to Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and NRD Holding Company on the transaction.
About Fuzzy’s Taco Shop
Founded in 2003 near the Texas Christian University campus in Fort Worth, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop® is a fast casual restaurant serving Mexican favorites with a splash of Baja. The laid-back atmosphere pairs perfectly with signature Baja-style tacos, famous chips and queso and icy-cold beverages always served at a chill price. With 138 franchise- and corporate-owned locations in 18 states, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop was ranked a Top Food Franchise, Top Franchise for Culture, and Top Multi-Unit Franchise for 2021 by Franchise Business Review. They’ve also been recognized in Franchise Times “The Top 500 Issue” in 2022 and appeared in Entrepreneur’s 2021 Franchise 500 Ranking and Nation’s Restaurant News’ #10 “Fastest Growing Chains” of 2018. For franchising information, visit www.MyFuzzys.com.
About Dine Brands Global, Inc.
Based in Glendale, California, Dine Brands Global, Inc. (NYSE: DIN), through its subsidiaries, franchises restaurants under both Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar® and IHOP® brands. With over 3,400 restaurants combined in 16 countries and 338 franchisees as of December 31, 2021, Dine Brands is one of the largest full-service restaurant companies in the world. For more information on Dine Brands, visit the Company’s website located at www.dinebrands.com.