FREE MEMBERSHIP Includes » ABL Advisor eNews + iData Blasts | JOIN NOW ABLAdvisor Gray ABLAdvisor Blue
Skip Navigation LinksHome / News / Read News


CIT: Steady Improvement for Restaurant Sector Expected

October 03, 2012, 07:00 AM
Filed Under: Restaurant
Related: CIT, The CIT Group

Slow economic growth and continued high unemployment have limited the recovery in discretionary consumer spending, but steady improvement for the restaurant sector should continue according to Bob Bielinski, Managing Director and Head of the Restaurant Industry Practice at CIT Group Inc,

This topic is one of many discussed in the U.S. Restaurant Industry Outlook.

Financing Available for Large Operators

Like consumers, lenders stepped away from the market during the downturn; however, they have returned, along with some new entrants. “Large and middle market restaurant companies, as well as franchisees of larger chains, have accessed the debt markets to finance growth, whether it’s acquisitions, new units or remodels,” says Bielinski. “However, if you’re a smaller company or a franchisee of a smaller chain, you’re probably still finding it difficult to get financing.”

IPO Markets Strong, M&A Steady
Earlier this year the market saw a steady flow of mergers and acquisitions transactions, including deals for Yard House, P.F. Chang’s, O’Charley’s and Benihana. Bielinski comments, “There have also been a significant number of franchisee transactions driven by the sales recovery and by the potential increase in taxes in 2013. It’s a great time to sell a business because valuation multiples are very high and the debt markets are strong, so buyers can get financing. However, the restaurant companies that were sold in 2010 and 2011 have new owners that aren’t ready to sell.”
The initial public offering market in 2012 has been strong for restaurant companies. Burger King and Bloomin’ Brands, the parent of the Outback Steakhouse chain, are formerly public companies that had gone private and are once again public. The public market has also welcomed smaller companies, including Ignite Restaurant Group, Chuy’s and Del Frisco. Bielinski adds, “The exciting news is the access these smaller companies now have. In the past the market wouldn’t have been accepting of companies that small.”

Week's News

Comments From Our Members

You must be an ABL Advisor member to post comments. Login or Join Now.