A customer enters a Pizza Hut restaurant in Princeton, Illinois.
Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Flynn Restaurant Group has put together a stalking horse bid of $ 816 million on the fortune of NPC International, the operator of hundreds of Pizza Hut and Wendy's restaurants.
The NPC, which also operates Wendy's facilities, announced on Friday that it has agreed to accept the offer and will seek bankruptcy court approval. The deal would give Flynn, the largest restaurant franchisee in the US, control of NPC's 1,300 Pizza Hut and Wendy's restaurants and their shared services assets. It would more than double Flynn's total restaurant space.
Privately owned Flynn has annual sales of approximately $ 2.3 billion and operates approximately 1,200 restaurants from Applebee, Panera Bread, Arby and Taco Bell. The operator has agreed to offer employment to essentially all more than 30,000 NPC workers. Pizza Hut and Taco Bell are both owned by Yum Brands.
The NPC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July. Under an agreement with Pizza Hut, around 300 of its sub-par locations will be permanently closed, but the remainder of the property has been put up for sale.
On Monday, Wendy's said in a regulatory filing that he was considering bidding on the burger chain's nearly 400 locations operated by NPC. The offering would include pre-qualified new and existing franchisees.
Due to the number of locations for sale, the outcome of the auction could have a drastic impact on Pizza Hut and Wendy's US operations. In the midst of a turnaround, Pizza Hut previously said it was looking for a new owner with a "healthy balance sheet" and a "strong capital structure".
Both chains have argued with NPC about the conditions of the sales process and are calling for more control over the selection of the next operator or the next operator of the locations.
A hearing on November 13th will determine whether Flynn's offer for Stalking Horse has been approved and a sale hearing will be held on December 4th.