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FAT Brands Completes Hurricane Grill Acquisition


We first brought you the story of Andy Wiederhorn and FAT Brands acquiring Hurricane Grill & Wings as part of our coverage for the Franchise Times Deal of the Year. Now we’ve got the rest of the details as the parent company has completed its purchase of the Florida-based restaurant franchise.

Wiederhorn’s FAT Brands is a global franchising company and parent of Fatburger, Buffalo’s Cafe, Buffalo’s Express, as well as Ponderosa and Bonanza steakhouses. Its acquisition of Hurricane Grill & Wings was a $12.5-million deal, which was funded through a combination of $8 million in cash and $4.5 million of preferred stock. With the acquisition of Hurricane, FAT Brands now franchises more than 325 restaurants around the world with annual systemwide sales exceeding $350 million.

Hurricane franchises more than 50 locations across the United States. FAT Brands plans to utilize Hurricane’s trademark tropical, laid-back American atmosphere to drive new store growth globally.

In the release announcing the sale, the company said its new Hurricane brand is complementary to FAT Brands’ existing portfolio brands, including Buffalo’s Cafe and Buffalo's Express, each known for serving chicken wings.

“The acquisition of Hurricane creates both significant synergies and the opportunity for continued expansion of the FAT Brands portfolio,” the release said.

Wiederhorn’s background includes 14 months in federal prison more than 10 years ago after he pleaded guilty to two felony counts for paying an illegal gratuity to a pension fund manager and for filing a false tax return. In Editor Beth Ewen’s story announcing Wiederhorn as the winner of our annual Deal of the Year, he goes into details about his past and maintained that he was the victim of bad legal advice.

Both Wiederhorn and FAT Brands, however, are more interesting than a checkered past. Through the use of a mini-IPO, FAT Brands went public, which suggests the company’s growth push is far from over.

More information on the Hurricane Grill & Wings acquisition is available from the company at:


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The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is senior editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is senior editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is restaurants editor at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
Laura MichaelsLaura Michaels is editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at




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