Emerging Brands

Area 15 Ventures takes full ownership of Daddy's Chicken Shack

The private-equity firm had already made an investment in the buttermilk fried chicken sandwich brand, but now has acquired the remaining equity.
Daddy's Chicken Shack exterior
The first Daddy's opened in Pasadena, Calif., in 2018. / Photo courtesy of Daddy's Chicken Shack.

The private-equity firm that recently acquired Port of Subs has now also taken majority ownership of Daddy’s Chicken Shack, the company said Friday.

Castle Rock, Colo.-based Area 15 Ventures, which was founded by RE/MAX co-founder Dave Liniger, had already made an investment in the fast-casual Daddy’s Chicken Shack, which had launched a regional franchising program. But the firm now has acquired the remaining equity in the brand with plans to grow.

“I’m thrilled to acquire full ownership, and we’re excited to move forward with our development goals,” said Liniger, who will serve as the brand’s chairman, in a statement.

Area 15 currently invests in 12 businesses, including the recently acquired Port of Subs, a 50-year-old sandwich chain based in Reno, Nev., with more than 130 units open. Other investment targets include motorcycle sales and services companies and a large Arabian horse breeder.

Daddy’s, which is known for its buttermilk fried chicken sandwiches, was founded in 2018 in Pasadena, Calif., by Pace Webb and Chris Georgalas. Webb is a caterer and built the brand around her popular fried chicken sliders. With the initial investment from Area 15, the founders grew the company to a dozen regional developers, and the brand now has 160 locations in the pipeline.

Liniger plans to open his first Daddy’s location in Scottsdale, Ariz., next month. His son, Dave Liniger Jr., meanwhile, will take the role of president of Daddy’s Chicken Shack.

“We are thrilled with the outcome of this partnership and I am personally ecstatic to be taking on a new role with Daddy’s Chicken Shack,” Dave Liniger Jr. said in a statement. “Pace and Chris cultivated a stellar business model with amazing menu items and we’re incredibly grateful for the close relationship we’ve formed with them over this last year. I have every confidence that their next endeavor will make waves in the restaurant industry and look forward to seeing our continued success as we work to scale Daddy’s Chicken Shack to its fullest potential.”


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