JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida-based company that owns the Firehouse Subs chain is in contract to be purchased by a Canadian company that owns Burger King, Popeye’s and Tim Horton’s fast-food restaurants, corporate leaders said Monday.
Restaurant Brands International said it had reached an agreement to acquire Jacksonville-based Firehouse Restaurant Group Inc. in a $1 billion all-cash transaction, the Toronto-based company said in a news release.
“We see tremendous potential to accelerate U.S. and international growth at Firehouse Subs with RBI’s development expertise, global franchisee network and digital capabilities,” said José Cil, CEO of Restaurant Brands International.
Restaurant Brands International plans to fund the acquisition through a combination of cash on hand and debt, company officials said. The agreement is expected to close in the coming months pending regulatory approval.
Firehouse Subs will remain based in Jacksonville. CEO Don Fox and CFO Vincent Burchianti will stay in their jobs, company officials said.
Firehouse Subs was founded in Jacksonville in 1994 by brothers and former firefighters Chris Sorensen and Robin Sorensen. It has 1,200 restaurants and is expected to have $1.1 billion in sales in 2021. Franchisees own 97% of the brand’s restaurants in the U.S. and Canada.