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Advent, THL, TA linked with Checkers Drive-In buyout

29 Aug 2012

Buyout houses Thomas H Lee Partners, Advent International and TA Associates are being tapped up as potential buyers for Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, it is understood.

The drive-through hamburger chain could sell for about $300m based on its $30m EBITDA, well above the $188m Wellspring Capital Management paid for Checkers in 2006.

Wellspring has hired North Point Advisors and Harris Williams & Co to assist with the deal according to Reuters.

It said the sale was currently in the management presentation stage with the company soliciting first round bids, with Advent’s 9.5 times EBITDA purchase of Bojangle’s Famous Chicken ‘n Biscuits in 2011 being viewed as a benchmark.

Checkers, the largest double drive-through restaurant chain in the US, has more than 800 franchised and company-operated locations across 27 states.

US investment group Angelo, Gordon & Co. finalised its $295m purchase of Japanese themed chain Benihana earlier this month, although the market has been less good for restaurant-related IPOs.

Bain Capital-controlled Bloomin’ Brands recently reduced the number of shares for sale in its IPO after raising just half of an anticipated $345m, while Apollo-backed CKE postponed its IPO citing market conditions.

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