Golden Gate Capital continues deal spree with Macaroni Grill exit


san_francisco_170sqGolden Gate Capital has agreed to sell Romano’s Macaroni Grill to Nasdaq-listed Ignite Restaurant Group for about $55m, marking the San Francisco-based buyout house’s fourth deal in the last five months.

The firm bought the business in 2008 for $88m including Romano’s real estate, which was later sold to Cardinal Capital Partners, according to a report by PEHub.

The sale is understood to have made the firm a 2.5-times return on investment, the report added.

The deal will be financed through a $50m upsizing of the company’s existing credit facility, Ignite Restaurant Group said in a statement.

Macaroni Grill provides an authentic Italian menu, including bronze-cut pastas with seasonal ingredients to grilled steak, seafood, hand stretched pizzas and flatbreads.

It opened its first restaurant in 1988 and today owns and operates 186 units and franchises five units across 36 US states, and also franchises an additional 19 units in nine US territories and foreign countries.

The business generated around $385m in revenues for the 12-month period ending December 31 2012, according to the statement.

“We are pleased with the outcome of our successful investment in Macaroni Grill and believe the company is well positioned for the future,” Golden Gate Capital managing director Josh Olshansky said in the statement.

KeyBanc Capital Markets is serving as exclusive financial advisor to Ignite, while

KeyBank National Association and Bank of America Merrill Lynch are acting as joint lead arrangers and joint bookrunners on the transaction financing.

The deal marks Golden Gate’s fourth deal in the last five months, following the buyouts of ArrMaz Custom Chemicals, Ex Libris Global and Collective Brands, which was bought alongside Wolverine Worldwide and Blum Capital.

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