Fast-food burger and Frosty purveyor Wendy’s said Monday that it will sell a majority stake in its fast-food chain Arby’s to Atlanta-based private equity group Roark Group (in case you’re wondering where else that name can possibly come from, it is indeed a reference to the main character in Ayn Rand’s 1943 novel The Fountainhead). Shares in Wendy’s/Arby’s Group were up 4.4% after the announcement.
Wendy’s will retain an 18.5% ownership of Arby’s which has been struggling to improve sales while consumers have tightened belts over the last year. Under the deal, Roark will pay Wendy’s $130 million in cash and assume approximately $190 million of debt related to Arby’s. Along with the stock it retains and an estimated $80 million tax benefit that will be realized over the next few years, Wendy’s values the deal at around $430 million.