Private equity firm TPG is making its first Saudi Arabian deal, joining forces with Middle East-focused PE firm the Abraaj Group to invest in Saudi Arabian food chain Kudu.
The target, Kudu, is a Saudi Arabian food group that has fast food and fast-casual restaurants, as well as coffee shops across the country, that sell sandwiches, hamburger, breakfast items, kids' meals and beverages. The group has five brands with more than 290 locations. Greg Helton, formerly of Burger King and Popeyes, has been put in place as Kudu's CEO.
Dubai-based Abraaj and Forth Worth, Texas-based TPG made the investment through a jointly-owned group. The firms say the space is ready to grow, in part due to an increase in disposable incomes in the area.
The Abraaj Group, considered the Middle East's largest private equity firm, focuses ontje investing in emerging markets in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Turkey. The firm landed on our Latest PE Fundraising Efforts list in February, and bought a stake in Yörsan Group, a Turkish dairy products business, in January 2014.For more on Abraaj, see 10 Emerging Markets to Watch: Turkey.
TPG has more than $67 billion in assets under management. In February, the firm announced it would sell pharmacy benefits manager EnvisionRx to Rite Aid Corp.
Other recent restaurant deals have come from Food Management Partners, which bought Catalina Restaurant Group, which owns Coco's Baker Restaurant and Carrows Restaurants, in March, and Redrock Partners LLC, which bought Romano's Macaroni Grill, also in March.