M&A wrap: Centerbridge, CraftWorks, Logan's Roadhouse, Oprah Winfrey, Movie Tavern, Riverside

Hazem Ouf

Centerbridge Partners-backed CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries has acquired steakhouse Logan's Roadhouse. The combined company is called CraftWorks Holdings and is being led by current Logan's CEO Hazem Ouf (pictured). CraftWorks operates 189 breweries and craft beer focused casual dining restaurants under the Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, Rock Bottom Restaurants & Breweries, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, and Big River Grille & Brewing Works brands. "We believe that our cumulative restaurant industry experience, the company’s extensive infrastructure, and the financial strength of our investors will allow us to drive excellence in service and quality within a scalable full-service dining platform," Ouf says in a statement. Logan's Roadhouse operates 204 restaurants. Centerbridge has experience in the restaurant sector. In 2018, one of the PE firm's portfolio companies, True Food Kitchen, received an investment from Oprah Winfrey. Bar-centric restaurants are receiving buyer interest and that is driving M&A in the sector. For more, read the full story: What's attracting hungry buyers to restaurants? Here are 7 trends.

Deal news
Enterprise Financial Services in Clayton, Mo., has agreed to buy Trinity Capital in Los Alamos, New Mexico. The $5.5 billion-asset Enterprise said that it will pay $213 million in cash and stock for the $1.3 billion-asset parent of Los Alamos National Bank. The deal, which is expected to close early in 2018, priced Trinity at 202 percent of its tangible book value. Read the full story: Enterprise entering New Mexico with Trinity Capital purchase.

The Marcus Corp. (NYSE: MCS) is buying in-dining movie theater chain Movie Tavern from Veronis Suhler Stevenson for $126 million. J.P. Morgan (NYSE: JPM) and Foley & Lardner are advising Marcus. PJ Solomon and Ropes & Gray are advising the target.

The Riverside Co.-backed Momentum Textiles has invested in Wallcovering Source Group, a maker of traditional and digitally printed wall and surface coverings. Jones Day, Deloitte and Alvarez & Marsal advised the buyers.

Webster Capital has acquired a majority stake in women's apparel and accessories retailer Sundance Holdings Group from Brentwood Associates. Lazard Middle Market, Financo and Greenberg Traurig advised Sundance and Brentwood Associates. Goodwin represented Webster.

Bertelsmann Education Group has acquired education software provider OnCourse Learning from CIP Capital. Harris Williams, Macquarie Capital, and Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP advised OnCourse. Manatt Phelps & Phillips advised Bertelsmann.

High Road Capital Partners has acquired Radix Wire, a manufacturer of high-temperature and fire-resistant wire and cable used in cooking and heating equipment, oil and gas, lighting, and fire protection systems.

Main Post Partners-backed Fortis Solutions Group has bought Premier Georgia Printing and Austin Label Co.

Information services company Neustar is buying Verisign Inc.'s security services contracts. The acquisition consists of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Protection, Managed DNS, DNS Firewall and fee-based Recursive DNS services customer contracts.

Leerink Transformation Partners has led a growth capital round in healthcare technology company PatientPop.

For more deal announcements, read the Weekly wrap: IBM, Sentinel, Sovos Brands.

For more on PE fundraising, read: PE fundraising scorecard: L Catterton and Lake Street Partners.

Featured content
The San Francisco 49ers defeated the Oakland Raiders 34-3 on Thursday night in NFL Week 9. Off the field, football stars team to build companies. Off the field, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady recently teamed with former Giants defensive end Michael Strahan, who is the co-host of ABC’s Good Morning America, to launch a sports media startup called Religion of Sports Media, which has raised $3 million in venture capital funding from CourtsideVC and Advancit Capital. Many NFL players invest in companies. Muhsin Muhammad, who played wide receiver for the Carolina Panthers and the Chicago Bears, is a managing director of private equity firm Axum Capital Partners. Steve Young, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, is a co-founder of private equity firm HGGC. Mergers & Acquisitions takes a look at star players who invest in companies through private equity, venture capital and other investment vehicles.

Acknowledging today’s climate of amplified workplace challenges, private equity firms must consider potential risks, from liability to litigation, before investing, writes Seyfarth Shaw's Gerald Maatman in this guest article. Read the full story: How to mitigate #MeToo risks before you buy.

Mergers & Acquisitions identifies 15 cities as fertile communities for dealmaking. We look at metropolitan areas from Austin (where Michael Dell launched a PC business out of his dorm room back in the day and where thousands gather every year for SXSW) to St. Louis(home of private equity firm Thompson Street Capital Partners). Be sure to check out Milwaukee (with private equity firm Robert W. Baird & Co. and investment bank Clearly Gull) and Minneapolis (home of strategic buyers 3M, Best Buy, General Mills, Hormel and Target). And don’t forget Boston, Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles and more. See our list, Dealmaker's guide to 15 cities where M&A thrives.

Why investors like diversity. "Companies that are inclusive and also diverse tend to outperform companies that aren't," says investor Lorine Pendleton of Pipeline Angels and Portfolia in this video interview shot at Exponent Exchange, a gathering of 200 female dealmakers. Watch the full video: M&A Insights: Inclusion investing.

Canada legalized recreational marijuana on Oct. 17, marking the first G7 nation and the second country in the world to enact full legalization. To investors in the still developing cannabis industry, many believe the market is just now approaching its own inflection point, as it transitions from a black to gray market, characterized by a more attractive risk profile and outsized growth potential. The sticking point is that as a Schedule I drug illegal under federal law, cannabis still presents imposing obstacles for traditional investors, ranging from capital markets that remain inaccessible to uncertainty over bankruptcy proceedings. Yet, ironically, it’s these very same obstacles that make the opportunity so appealing to investors willing to operate in an indefinite gray area to create an ecosystem for a market expected to reach $75 billion in size by 2030. Salveo Capital managing partner Jeffrey Howard shares advice about investing in cannabis in a guest article. Read the full story: How to seize M&A opportunities in marijuana’s gray market.

Events
ACG Chicago's Family Office Conference, held Nov. 8, at the Westin Chicago River North, brings deamakers together for a "deep dive" into family offices. The event features a keynote by Laurent Roux, Gallatin Wealth Management, and panels, including: Current State of Family Office Direct & Co-Investment Activity, with Gary Levenstein, Nixon Peabody; and Impact of Millennial Generation on Family Office Investment Strategy including Social Impact Investing, with Adam Lieb and Tony Oommen, Fidelity Family Office Services.

ACG Florida Capital Connection, held Nov. 12-14, at the Vinoy Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort & Golf Club, puts “sun and fun” into dealmaking for the middle market, bringing together hundreds of dealmakers. The keynote speaker is Forbes Media CEO Steve Forbes, and the featured speaker for the Women’s Forum is Valerie Crites Fowler, who served as a diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service for over 29 years, reaching the rank of Minister Counselor in the Senior Foreign Service.

Middle Market Week, hosted by ACG New York and held Nov. 26-30 at various locations throughout New York, brings together leading global middle-market dealmaking professionals to develop and enhance their dealmaking activities, strengthen their long-term relationships, and provide numerous opportunities for networking all week long. Mark your calendar for the Private Equity Annual Wine Tasting Gala on Nov. 28 at Gotham Hall. The building was constructed in the 1920s as the headquarters of the Greenwich Savings Bank. The gala brings together the leading middle market private equity firms for an evening of fine wines and networking.

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