Hong Kong-based global private equity firm Anchor Equity Partners, which owns Burger King Korea, has acquired Burger King Japan from Lotte GRS, according to industry sources on April 24.
Although the PEF did not disclose the acquisition price, industry sources estimate the amount to be around 10 billion won ($8.7 million).
Currently, there are 84 Burger King outlets in Japan. Among these stores, the PEF is acquiring 50 to 60 outlets, excluding those suffering severe losses, sources said.
Burger King Japan has lost money in the last eight years, mainly due to severe competition. It posted operating loss of around 8.3 billion won in 2017, and the unit’s accumulated losses since 2010 reached 113. 7 billion won.
According to sources, the PEF aims to inject around 50 billion won into Burger King Japan and to increase the number of stores up to 300 by 2020.
As the PEF operates Burger King in Korea, it hopes to tap into its know-how on the fast-food business here.
Burger King Korea recently saw some improvement in sales, following a decline partly due to a case of a girl being diagnosed with Hemolytic uremic syndrome, more commonly known as hamburger disease, after eating at a McDonald’s outlet here in 2017.
Its sales last year increased 16 percent to 402.7 billion won, and profit increased 535 percent to 8.9 billion won.
By Song Seung-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)