The agreement was unanimously approved by Sonic’s Board of Directors, and represents a premium of approximately 19 percent per share to Sonic’s closing stock price on September 24, 2018 ($43.50 per share).
“This value-maximizing transaction validates the actions we have taken over the last year to grow traffic and improve sales while delivering differentiated offerings and superior guest service,” J. Clifford Hudson, Sonic’s CEO, said in a press release. “Our Board of Directors, taking into account the views of shareholders, conducted a comprehensive review of a wide range of strategic options to maximize shareholder value. This transaction delivers significant, immediate and certain value to Sonic shareholders, and the private ownership structure will provide important benefits to our guests, franchisees and employees.”
He continued,“As one of the largest owner-operators of company-owned and franchised restaurant brands, Inspire appreciates the unique culture of collaboration between Sonic and our franchisees. Sonic franchisees are engaged in planning regarding technology, new products and marketing programs, and the team at Inspire recognizes the central role our franchisees have played, and will continue to play, in Sonic’s success. We look forward to working closely with Inspire as we continue to provide made-to-order American classics, distinctive flavors and the most personalized guest experience in our industry.”
“Sonic is a highly differentiated brand and is an ideal fit for the Inspire family,” said Paul Brown, CEO of Inspire Brands. “We have tremendous respect for Sonic’s exceptional team of employees and franchise owners, who have built one of the industry’s most distinctive restaurant brands. We’re excited to build on Sonic’s momentum as we leverage our combined expertise and capabilities to better serve guests, further support team members and franchisees and drive long-term growth.”