Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux said it has taken on an Atlanta-based private equity firm as a strategic partner to help the Baton Rouge-based chain reach its goal of opening 150 locations over the next 5 years.
Terms of the deal with 10 Point Capital were not disclosed. 10 Point has played a role in the growth of Tropical Smoothie Café, which now has more than 870 locations nationwide including eight in Louisiana, and Slim Chickens, an Arkansas-based chain with nearly 85 locations in the U.S. and abroad.
Brandon Landry, chief executive officer and co-founder of Walk-On’s, said 10 Point’s track record of helping businesses grow their brands nationally “is exactly what we were looking for.”
Landry will remain as CEO and continue to be the largest shareholder in the company, said Scott Taylor, chief operating officer and president of Walk-On's. Baton Rouge will remain the headquarters for the chain, he said.
Walk-On’s has more than 40 restaurants across nine states and plans to open 15 locations this year, including its first restaurants in Miami and Tallahassee, Florida. While the chain’s growth so far has happened in the Southeast and Texas, it has sold franchise locations in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Missouri. More than 90 locations are in development.
By the end of 2021, plans are to have 74 Walk-On’s locations operating, and be near 100 restaurants by the end of 2022, Taylor said.
Scott Pressly, co-founder of 10 Point, praised Landry for building an “exceptional brand through amazing food, service and franchisee support.”
Walk-On's had been talking to 10 Point for more than a year and a half. The company's investment will allow the chain to be more nimble, expand the scope of recruiting new franchisees and improve the ability to analyze real estate, Taylor said.
“They have a proven record with franchise systems and they join the company with a fresh set of eyes,” he said. “We feel like we have a bright future with this new strategic partner at the table.”
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