UPDATED June 18, 2016.
Dubai-based Adeptio LLC, an investment consortium led by Emaar Properties chairman Mohamed Alabbar, abandoned its offer to acquire a 69% stake in Americana Group (Kuwait Food Company)(KSE: FOOD), from Al-Khair National Stocks and Real Estate, a holding company owned by the Al Kharafi family, one of Kuwait’s wealthiest and most prominent merchant groups.
Americana is one of the largest companies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, operating restaurants, and manufacturing and marketing consumer foods. Adeptio’s proposed 69% buyout was reportedly valued at $2.15 billion based on Americana’s current market value of $3.11 billion.
“Americana is a truly unique asset with a long and successful history. We see a bright future for Americana and look forward to working with management to realize the significant growth potential in the business going forward,” Alabbar said in February, at the time he signed a preliminary agreement to acquire a controlling stake in Americana, subject to due diligence.
“No final agreement has been reached,” said Al-Khair in a statement filed with the Kuwait Stock Exchange. “The two sides have agreed to end negotiations of the planned sale.”
Al-Khair’s efforts to sell the Al Kharafi controlling stake in Americana, have been on and off during the past two years. Last year Saudi-based food company Savola, in partnership with Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings, reportedly offered $4 billion to acquire the firm, but their offer was rejected. Private equity firms KKR & Co. and CVC Capital Partners Ltd. also previously attempted to acquire Al-Kharafi’s 69% stake in Americana, but these efforts never came to fruition.
M.A. Kharafi & Sons is a privately-held diversified conglomerate based in Kuwait, with interests in food, real estate, steel, telecom, wastewater treatment plants, airlines, airports, hotels and travel services, aluminum, asphalt, concrete, fertilizers, and other industry sectors. The company was founded in 1956 by Mohammed Abdul Mohsen Al-Kharafi. The company’s current CEO and vice-chairman is billionaire Fawzi Al-Kharafi, whos late brother and former chairman Nasser Al-Kharafi, led the company until his death in 2011.
Americana Group’s main lines of business are operating food & beverage outlets, as well as manufacturing food products. With a network of over 1,690 outlets, it is not only the largest operator of restaurant chains in the MENA region, but also one of the most successful franchise operators in the world. The group’s network encompasses 12 of the world’s most recognized brands in the Quick Service, Casual Dining and Fine Dining categories, such as KFC, Pizza Hut, Hardee’s, TGI Friday’s, Red Lobster, Olive Garden, LongHorn, Signor Sassi, Costa Coffee, Krispy Kreme and, most recently, The Counter.
Americana also operates 6 of its own homegrown brands, which are as successful as their global counterparts. Americana is one of the region’s leading manufacturers and marketers of a wide range of quality food products for consumers in the region and beyond. The group’s leading brands, including California Garden, Farm Frites, Koki and Americana Meat, are household favorites and have become market leaders. Founded in Kuwait in 1964, and publicly traded on the Kuwait Stock Exchange, Americana has operations in 13 countries, with over 63,000 employees from 21 nationalities.