A 3,000 pound granite marker in Chicago A 3,000 pound granite marker in Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood marks the location where President Obama first kissed First Lady Michelle Obama. The Obamas will celebrate their 20th anniversary this October. (AP Photo / Charles Rex Arbogast)   

Romney’s Bain saved site of Obamas’ first kiss

Bain Capital, the investment firm that Mitt Romney made famous, made a leveraged buyout that saved the site of Barack and Michelle Obamas’ first kiss.

In 2005, Bain and two other private equity firms purchased Dunkin’ Brands Incorporated for $2.425 billion, according to a 2006 company press release.

Dunkin’ Brands is the parent company of Baskin-Robbins, at whose Hyde Park, Chicago location the president and his future wife Michelle went on their first date — and shared their first lip lock.

President Obama took the first lady out on a date in 1989 when the two worked at the same Chicago law firm, according to a Chicago Tribune article.

A 3,000-pound granite boulder now occupies the corner of Dorchester and 53rd Street, outside the ice cream parlor, bearing a quote about the couple’s first date.

“On our first date, I treated her to the finest ice cream Baskin-Robbins had to offer, our dinner table doubling as the curb. I kissed her, and it tasted like chocolate,” the inscription states.

In 2011, Dunkin’ Brands raised $400 million for its IPO, according to The Associated Press. The IPO allowed it to pay off most of its $475 million in high-interest debt.

As of June 30, 2012, Dunkin’ Brands had $3.174 billion in total assets. To help orchestrate the company’s turnaround, Bain and other private equity firms hired a new executive chef and new head of technology, and added health-conscious items to its subsidiary’s menus.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was the CEO of Bain Capital from 1984 to 2002. He also co-founded the company.

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