Restaurant Brands Inc., parent company of Burger King, announced it is acquiring more than 1,000 locations from Carrols Restaurant Group for $1 billion.
With Burger King now taking ownership of so many of its locations, the company plans to remodel restaurants over the next five to seven years. Carrols was previously the largest franchisee of Burger King locations.
The announcement comes as several major Burger King franchise owners dealt with bankruptcy proceedings in 2023. Among them, Premier Kings, an operator of 172 Burger King restaurants, filed for bankruptcy in November, nearly 18 months after the company's founder died unexpectedly.
Premier Kings' announcement followed the bankruptcy of two other operators, Meridian Restaurants Unlimited and Toms King, who filed for bankruptcy earlier in 2023. Meridian Restaurants United operated 120 Burger King locations. Toms King operated 90 restaurants.
Data released by Burger King indicates the stores it purchased averaged $1.7 million in sales for the 12-month period ending in October. By comparison, Premier Kings reported about $1.3 million in per-restaurant sales annually.
"Carrols has demonstrated strong and improving restaurant operations over the years," Tom Curtis, president of Burger King U.S. and Canada, said. "This acquisition is an exciting accelerator to our Reclaim the Flame plan that is focused on relentlessly pursuing a better experience for our Guests. We are going to rapidly remodel these restaurants over the next five years or so and put them back into the hands of motivated, local franchisees to create amazing experiences for our Guests."
Burger King said it plans to eventually re-franchise most of the locations purchased but hang onto some for training and development purposes.
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