Burger King set to buy Popeyes in $1.8billion deal

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Restaurant Brands International Inc., owner of the Burger King and Tim Hortons fast-food chains, said on Tuesday it would acquire Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen for $1.8 billion in cash.

The deal is a bet by Oakville, Ontario-based Restaurant Brands that it can use its international reach to introduce Popeyes’ Louisiana-style fried chicken and buttermilk biscuits to more diners globally.

Popeyes shareholders will get $79.00 for each share they hold, a 19.5 percent premium to the stock’s Friday close.

Popeyes, whose fans include pop singer BeyoncĂ©, began 45 years ago as a Southern-fried “Chicken on the Run” restaurant in a New Orleans suburb. It has since expanded to more than 2,000 restaurants, of which 1,600 are in the United States.

Restaurant Brands was formed in 2014, when 3G Capital-backed Burger King acquired Canadian coffee and doughnut chain Tim Hortons Inc. for $11 billion.

Restaurant Brands said on Tuesday it would finance the deal with cash on hand and a financing commitment from J.P. Morgan and Wells Fargo.

The company was advised by Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison LLP. Popeyes received financial advice from UBS and Genesis Capital LLC and legal counsel from King & Spalding LLP.

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