Fri 07/30/2021 13:49 PM
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Relevant Documents:
Disposal Release
Q1 Results Report
Q1 Results Presentation
Funds controlled by HIG Capital are acquiring the French operations of fast food chain Quick from Burger King France, according to a release.

Burger King France will generate about €240 million of proceeds from the sale, which will be used to repay in full the €80 million loan guaranteed by the French state taken in June of 2020 in connection with the Covid-19 pandemic. The rest of the proceeds will be used to reduce the group’s net debt and strengthen its financial structure.

The Bertrand-backed fast food group has been working with Lazard as a financial advisor, sources told Reorg. The company was being marketed off 2020 expected EBITDA of €31 million, which included Covid-19 related adjustments, sources said. Teasers were distributed in June and at the time some lenders told Reorg they were uncomfortable with the restaurant sector due to the uncertainty caused by government restrictions related to the Covid-19 crisis.

HIG Capital will purchase 100% of the shares of Burger King France’s indirect subsidiary Quick Restaurants SA. The transaction is expected to close before the end of the year, subject to standard conditions including certain antitrust clearances.

Burger King France’s first-quarter sales for the three-month period ended March 31, 2021 rose 6.2% to €114.8 million, driven by an increase in “other revenues,” while restaurant revenue was down 15%. The group opened 14 Burger King restaurants and one Quick restaurant during the quarter. Five Quick restaurants were closed during the quarter for conversion.

For the full year 2019, the fast food chain generated approximately €227 million of sales and €21 million of EBITDA, according to the release.

In December 2015, Burger King France acquired Quick and signed a master franchisee agreement by which it was only allowed to operate the Quick brand for five years. After 2020, the company was only allowed to operate Burger King restaurants in France, according to a statement at the time.

Burger King France relaunched the sale of Quick on May 27 after the French government announced a roadmap for the easing of restrictions that were affecting restaurants in France. The decision to resume the process initially started in 2019 but had been delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

As of May 27, the Quick network had 120 restaurants compared with 140 a year earlier.

Quick was founded in 1970 with the first restaurant in Belgium in Antwerp and established itself as a European hamburger fast food brand with restaurants in Belgium, Luxembourg and France. In 2016, the group sold 101 Quick restaurants to QRS in Belgium and Luxembourg to center its strategy in France as its core geographical market.

--Lucía Camblor
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