Jack in the Box Inc. (NASDAQ: JACK), one of the nation’s leading QSR chains, and Del Taco Restaurants, Inc. (NASDAQ: TACO), the nation’s second largest Mexican QSR chain by number of restaurants, announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement pursuant to which Jack in the Box will acquire Del Taco for $12.51 per share in cash in a transaction valued at approximately $575 million, including existing debt. While this price per share offers an attractive premium to Del Taco shareholders, Jack in the Box estimates that the transaction values Del Taco at a synergy adjusted multiple of approximately 7.6x trailing twelve months Adjusted EBITDA.
Founded in 1964, Del Taco serves more than three million guests each week at its approximately 600 restaurants across 16 states. 99% of Del Taco restaurants feature a drive-thru, helping to achieve strong off-premise sales and a diversified daypart mix. Jack in the Box and Del Taco will have more than 2,800 restaurants spanning 25 states with similar guest profiles, menu offerings and company cultures – both priding themselves on serving guests with unique variety, quality, innovation and value. Together, the companies will create a stronger QSR player with greater scale and the ability to enhance the guest experience while pursuing profitable growth.
“We are thrilled to welcome Del Taco, a beloved brand and proven regional winner, to the Jack in the Box family,” said Darin Harris, CEO of Jack in the Box. “This is a natural combination of two like-minded, challenger brands with outstanding growth opportunities. Together, Jack in the Box and Del Taco will benefit from a stronger financial model, gaining greater scale to invest in digital and technology capabilities, and unit growth for both brands. This acquisition fits squarely in our strategic pillars and helps us create new opportunities for the franchisees, team members and guests of both brands.”
Mr. Harris continued, “Del Taco has a loyal, passionate guest base and a strong operating model, and we believe that we can leverage our infrastructure, experience refranchising, and development strategy to support Del Taco’s growth plans and expand Del Taco’s footprint. We can’t wait to welcome the Del Taco team members and franchisees to the Jack family!”
David Beshay, a Jack in the Box franchisee and operator of 210+ restaurants, added, "I couldn’t be happier about the opportunity that this transaction offers to the franchisees of these two amazing brands. I believe the Del Taco brand will fit hand in glove with ours, and further enhance the strong franchise and guest-focused culture we have worked so hard to develop at Jack in the Box. We are excited about the potential to open Del Taco restaurants, helping the company expand these two beloved brands."
John D. Cappasola, Jr., President and CEO of Del Taco, said, “We are excited to have found a partner in Jack in the Box that shares our vision for the future and has the QSR expertise to further accelerate Del Taco’s growth. In recent years, we have uniquely positioned Del Taco as a leader in the growing Mexican QSR category, expanded our digital capabilities to enhance consumer convenience and focused on growing the brand through franchising, resulting in eight consecutive years of franchise same store sales growth and an accelerating new unit pipeline.”
Mr. Cappasola, Jr. continued, “We expect this transaction will provide Del Taco with the scale, complementary capabilities and opportunity to become even stronger partners to our franchisees and support their ability to drive substantial growth in our core and emerging markets. On behalf of Del Taco Restaurants, Inc. Board of Directors, we’re confident the agreement delivers immediate value to Del Taco shareholders and will greatly benefit our brand, team members, franchisees and loyal guests for many years to come.”
Brent Veach, a Del Taco franchisee and operator of 50+ restaurants, shared, “Del Taco and Jack in the Box are two iconic brands that both represent a tremendous business opportunity for existing and new franchisees. I am excited how this new larger organization can provide operating cost synergies and further accelerate franchise growth through enhanced support, additional resources and shared real estate knowledge. We are excited to join the Jack in the Box family and assist in growing both amazing brands.”