Hooters of America, the breastaurant chain long rumored to be for sale, has been acquired by Nord Bay Capital and TriArtisan Capital Advisors, the parties announced late Monday.
Details of the deal were not disclosed. Previous Hooters owners Chanticleer Holdings and H.I.G. Capital will retain stakes in the casual-dining chain.
Hooters of America is the franchisor and operator of more than 430 Hooters restaurants in 38 states and 27 countries.
“The partnership with Nord Bay and TriArtisan comes at an ideal time for the company, bringing fresh partners with complementary skills and experience to support our next phase of growth to the benefit of all our employees, franchisees and customers," Terry Marks, Hooters' CEO, said in a statement.
Hooters launched a fast-casual spinoff, Hoots, in 2017, designed to appeal to customers in a hurry looking for the brand's signature chicken wings. Employees at Hoots, in contrast to those at Hooters who wear skin-tight shirts and short shorts, dress more modestly.
The new ownership has plans to expand Hoots, Marks said.
"Our core business is strong with a world-famous and differentiated brand, a first-rate management team and a loyal base of experienced franchisees," he said in the statement. "In addition, we are pleased with the early results of our new fast-casual concept and plan additional openings later this year.”
Chanticleer acquired Hooters in 2011. The chain was briefly up for sale in 2015.
Hooters sales declined 1.7% from 2017 to 2018, according to Technomic data, with company-owned units growing sales 2.7% and franchisee-owned sales dropping 6.6%.
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