A roundup of interesting bits of news that came across the editor’s desk in the last month, including mergers and acquisitions, chain expansion news, and international expansions from Inspire Brands, Carl’s Jr., and Teriyaki Madness among many more.

mergers + acquisitions + more

  • Inspire Brands, Inc., a new global multibrand restaurant company was created in the wake of the $2.9 billion acquisition of Buffalo Wild Wings, Inc. by Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. The new group also includes R Taco.
  • Meritage Hospitality Group Inc. acquired 38 Wendy’s restaurants located in Connecticut and Massachusetts.
  • Montreal-based MTY Food Group Inc. acquired Grabbagreen for $2.75 million.
  • deOrangewood Partners and ABDD Capital acquired 24 Taco Bell stores in the greater Louisville, Ky., market.

chain chain chain

  • Fast-casual Mexican-inspired California Tortilla plans to open 10 new units over the next year and debut in three new states: Virginia, Kansas and North Carolina.
  • Carl’s Jr. opened its first Manhattan location, it’s second in New York City. Earlier this year, the chain opened its first Coney Island unit.  
  • East Coast Wings + Grill has plans to expand throughout the state of Tennessee. With three existing units in Memphis, Kingsport, and Johnson City, the company has announced plans to open seven additional locations through franchise partnerships over the next two years.
  • Fast-casual The Halal Guys signed a deal to bring five locations to the Detroit metropolitan area.
  • Teriyaki Madness plans to open 20 to 25 locations in Miami over the next five years. The fast-casual Asian concept currently has two locations in Miami.


  • Another Broken Egg named Clay Carson vice president of franchise sales and real estate development. Most recently, Carson was director of development for Coolgreens. 
  • Sonic Drive-In named Johnny Jones its vice president of development, responsible for leadership of the franchise sales and construction teams. Over his 20-year tenure, Jones has played a key role at SONIC and previously served as vice president of real estate and development and other leadership roles on the development team.
  • Eric Kindon was promoted to director of construction from construction and facilities manager at Walk-On’s Bistreaux and Bar.

go big or go home

  • Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers will bring its concept to the Middle East with plans to develop in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Jordon, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman and Qatar. The first restaurant will be located in Dubai and is slated to open this fall.
  • “Better chicken” chain Slim Chicken announced its debut in the UK with a franchise agreement to bring the chain to England and Ireland, with the first slated to open in London in the first quarter of 2018.

go big or go home and have it delivered

  • Yum! Brands purchased $200 million in Grubhub stock and the two entered into a partnership to drive incremental sales to KFC and Taco Bell in the U.S. via online ordering for pickup and delivery.


  • Red Lobster is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2018.