City Capital Ventures, LLC (CCV) operates as the private investment division of City Capital, a boutique investment banking firm. Since its inception in 2006, City Capital Ventures “has advised on over $4 billion in transactions,” according to the company. The venture firm’s portfolio consists of four consumer-based and one security: Matt’s Cookies, Diedrich Roasters, Feel Good Foods, Rib Rack Premium BBQ, and ProSteel.
CCV has made another addition to its portfolio after acquiring Redberry Group, a Toronto-based franchisee, which operates one of the “largest quick-service restaurant franchisees in North America.” However, the financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
Redberry operates a total of 134 locations across Canada: 111 Burger King restaurants, and 23 Pizza Hut stores. The franchisee’s Burger King holdings account for nearly 40% of total locations across Canada. Here is the full press release detailing of the acquisition:
City Capital Ventures, LLC Press Release:
CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–City Capital Ventures, LLC (“CCV”), a private investment partnership headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, is pleased to announce its acquisition of Toronto-based Redberry Group (“Redberry” or the “Company”). Redberry is one of the largest quick-service restaurant franchisees in North America with 134 total restaurants consisting of 111 Burger King restaurants and 23 Pizza Hut restaurants, all located in Canada. Redberry is the largest Burger King franchisee in Canada with roughly 40% of the brand’s footprint in Canada. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
The sale of Redberry is supported by its two franchisor partners, Burger King and Pizza Hut, who both desire a franchisee partner capable of achieving the growth potential they see in Canada. Founded in 1954, Burger King is the second largest global fast food hamburger chain in the world with more than 17,500 locations. Since being acquired in 2010 by 3G Capital and becoming the cornerstone to Restaurant Brands International, Burger King has enjoyed a renaissance in its business, led by the freshness and innovation of its menu and its market positioning. Pizza Hut was founded in 1958 and has become the world’s leading pizza chain with over 16,800 units worldwide.
Dan Kipp, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of CCV, commented, “We are thrilled to be acquiring two iconic restaurant brands in the highly attractive Canadian QSR market. The Burger King brand is underpenetrated in Canada relative to other QSR burger brands, and we see a compelling opportunity for expansion. Similarly, Redberry has a strong Pizza Hut presence in Alberta with a base of nicely profitable units. The opportunity to continue to develop new units in the market is quite attractive to us.” Mr. Kipp will be joining Redberry’s Board of Directors pursuant to the transaction.
CCV has engaged Spencer Stuart to assist in conducting a search for a new CEO for Redberry. The leadership team at Redberry will continue with the Company. CCV is also partnering with Gary Graves, a deeply experienced retail and restaurant executive and former Chairman of Caribou Coffee, who will become Chairman of Redberry. Chicago-based Saxonwold Capital will be an investment partner of CCV’s in this transaction, and Rob Selati, President of Saxonwold, will also join the Redberry Board concurrent with the investment.
“We are highly impressed with the current management team and excited for them to be our partners in accelerating Redberry’s growth in Canada and delivering superior operating results,” added incoming Chairman Graves. “Redberry’s experienced and effective management team, which has been in place since 2014 and combined brings over 100 years of relevant QSR industry experience, provides the foundation for our organic growth.”
Senior debt for the transaction was provided by CIBC and Scotiabank. McCarthy Tétrault LLP served as legal counsel to CCV with additional services provided by Perkins Coie LLP. Metronome Partners served as financial advisor to Redberry Group.
About Redberry Group
Founded in 2005, Redberry Group is one of the largest quick-service restaurant franchisees in North America with 134 restaurants consisting of 111 Burger King restaurants and 23 Pizza Hut restaurants. The Burger King locations represent 40% of all Canadian Burger King locations across Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba. Redberry’s Pizza Hut units are located in Alberta.
About City Capital Ventures
City Capital Ventures is an investment partnership whose purpose is to pair capital with business opportunity in a better, more-tailored way. Investing on behalf of their network of family offices and private market investors, CCV seeks out firms with innovative business designs and attractive niche positions and looks to invest at inflection points—not pre-determined stages. Because of their flexible mandate, CCV investments are unbound by size or industry, though they typically invest in consumer, commercial and service businesses requiring up to $100 million of capital. CCV’s aim is to create lasting value for their investors, the companies in which they invest, and the broader stakeholders touched by their companies. For more information, visit www.citycapitalventures.com.