Meritage Hospitality Group, Inc. (OTCQX: MHGU), one of the nation’s premier restaurant operators, today announced it has acquired two Wendy’s franchised portfolios consisting of nine Wendy’s restaurants in Atlanta, GA, and ten Wendy’s restaurants in Richmond, VA. In addition, the Company has opened a new Wendy’s restaurant located on Trout River Road in Jacksonville, FL marking its 111th restaurant in operation.
“We welcome our 500 new employees in Atlanta, Richmond and Jacksonville to the Meritage family,” stated Robert E. Schermer, Jr., CEO of Meritage Hospitality Group, Inc. “The strength of our web-based operating platform, and the brand reimaging and modernization of Wendy’s restaurants remains a hallmark of our growth strategy and workforce opportunities,” added Mr. Schermer.
The Company plans to implement major capital improvements in its acquired Wendy’s locations, beginning with the installation of the Company’s comprehensive restaurant back-of-house operating and accounting systems, along with “Image Activation” and other key brand initiatives designed to contemporize both the interior and exterior guest experience.
The transactions represent the Company’s completion of seven Wendy’s acquisitions in recent years. The acquisitions were financed utilizing an acquisition credit facility with First Franchise Capital Corporation, the Company’s primary Wendy’s restaurant lender. The combination of the acquisitions and newly opened restaurant will add approximately $27.0 million in annual sales and is forecasted to be materially accretive to EBITDA and net earnings per common share in 2013.
Meritage continues to invest in the long-term fundamentals of the Wendy’s restaurant brand and remains committed to the installation of its web-based restaurant operating platform. The Company currently operates 111 restaurants in six states including; Atlanta, Georgia; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Jacksonville, Florida; North Carolina; South Carolina and Richmond, VA.
The Company is headquartered in Grand Rapids, MI and employs a workforce of approximately 3,500 people. The Company’s public filings can be viewed at www.otcqx.com under the stock symbol MHGU, or at the Company’s website, www.meritagehospitality.com.