Owned and operated 47 Applebee’s franchise units located in three areas of Florida: Northern (Jacksonville), Eastern (West Palm Beach and Port St. Lucie) and Western (Sarasota and Naples).
The company had extensive real estate holdings, owning the building and underlying land for 30 of its units and owning just the building for 12 additional units. The Florida markets’ demographics are quite compelling, with rapid population growth, giving the company significant growth opportunities.
Brookwood was hired by Georgas Partners to sell the Florida Apple, LLC operations and related real estate holdings. Georgas Partners also owns a back office services company that supported several operating entities. Brookwood marketed Florida Apple with its sister company, Grillco (a Wendy’s franchisee), but also included detailed information on each entity. We contacted private equity groups and strategic buyers that would be interested in the size and scope of the combined entity and also contacted strategic buyers and some private equity groups that would only be interested in one of the two companies.
Engagement Process and Outcomes
Successfully sold a majority stake in Florida Apple, LLC to an existing Applebee’s franchisee.
Negotiated a complex sale leaseback transaction with GE Franchise Finance Corporation. Many of the properties were originally financed with securitized debt with lock out provisions that had not expired.
We were able to work through that issue and secure the sale/leaseback for the sellers.