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Restaurant Brands, home of Burger King and Tim Hortons, will buy Popeyes for $1.8bn

The company that owns Burger King and Tim Hortons restaurant chains has announced that it is adding Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen to its roster.

Restaurant Brands Inc. (RBI) reached an agreement with the Louisiana-style fried chicken chain Tuesday, adding a successful and highly-regarded food brand with strong customer loyalty. The move gives the company further reach into the global market, adding Popeyes’ 2,600-plus restaurants in the US and other countries to its existing portfolio of over 20,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries and US territories.

Founded in New Orleans in 1972, Popeyes has 45 years of history and culinary tradition and is the franchisor and operator of Popeyes restaurants. Today Popeyes is one of the world's largest quick service restaurant chicken concepts.

Following the closing of the transaction, Popeyes will continue to be managed independently in the US while benefiting from the global scale and resources of RBI. Building on the momentum of recent years, RBI plans to continue developing the brand at an increasing pace in the US and international markets in the years to come.

"Popeyes is a powerful brand with a rich Louisiana heritage that resonates with guests around the world. With this transaction, RBI is adding a brand that has a distinctive position within a compelling segment and strong US and international prospects for growth. As Popeyes becomes part of the RBI family we believe we can deliver growth and opportunities for all of our stakeholders including our valued employees and franchisees. We look forward to taking an already very strong brand and accelerating its pace of growth and opening new restaurants in the US and around the world,” said Daniel Schwartz, chief executive officer of RBI.

Cheryl Bachelder, chief executive officer of Popeyes, said: "I am proud of the superior results the Popeyes team has delivered in recent years; they have served all stakeholders well. As Popeyes enters its 45th year, its success reflects the amazing brand entrusted to us by founder Al Copeland Sr. and the unique high trust partnership that we enjoy with our franchise owners. RBI has observed our success and seen the opportunity for exceptional future unit growth in the US and around the world. The result is a transaction that delivers immediate and certain value to the Popeyes shareholders."

Under the terms of the transaction, Popeyes shareholders will receive $79.00 in cash per share at closing. This represents a premium of 27% based on Popeyes' 30-trading day Volume Weighted Average Price as of February 10, the last trading day before media speculation on the potential sale of Popeyes.

The transaction is expected to close by early April 2017.

Popeyes is currently with Austin creative agency GSD&M for its advertising.

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