Roark Capital has made an offer to buy Buffalo Wild Wings, a source familiar with the matter told CNBC.
Roark made an offer of more than $150 per share, the person told CNBC. Shares surged nearly 28 percent after The Wall Street Journal initially reported the offer.
The person who spoke to CNBC asked not to be named because the information is usually confidential. Buffalo Wild Wings in addition to Roark did not immediately respond to requests for comment
A private equity buyout of the the chicken wing restaurant chain could come months after the idea lost a bitter proxy contest that will led to the retirement announcement of its CEO in addition to the addition of three completely new directors to its board.
Activist investor Marcato had pushed Buffalo Wild Wings to move away via its strategy of mostly owning its restaurants to a more capital-light franchised style. After the proxy fight concluded in June, CEO Sally Smith said she could retire by the end of the year. Marcato added three of its four nominees to the board, including Marcato manager Mick McGuire.
Buffalo Wild Wing’s stock had dropped 34 percent over the last year via $163 a share to $108 a share, before surprising the street last month when the idea beat its third quarter earnings expectations. As of Monday’s close, the stock was down more than 28 percent over the past 12 months.
For Roark, the acquisition could fit well within its restaurant heavy investment portfolio, including sandwich chain restaurant Arby’s. Arby’s earlier This particular year tried buy Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen.
The deal could also be notable for potentially marking the return of private equity buyouts of publicly traded restaurants. Such deals have slowed, as restaurants have largely traded too expensively for financial buyers. Recent challenges though, including increased competition in addition to preference for dining at home, have lowered share prices.