이 기사는 2020년 06월 01일 08:00 더벨 유료페이지에 표출된 기사입니다.
The possibility is being raised that foreign investors could participate in the bidding for SkyLake Investment-owned Outback Steakhouse Korea.
Credit Suisse, which is running the auction, is searching for potential foreign investors in the restaurant chain, sources said on May 28. The investment bank has assigned its Hong Kong-based staff as well as personnel in its Seoul office to work on the sale.
Industry watchers see potential bids from foreign investors seeking to expand into the overseas food service market. They said Outback Steakhouse’s upscale brand image could attract bidders, particularly those who want to enter the Chinese market where western restaurants account for a mere 0.3 percent of the total restaurants according to data from Credit Suisse.
“Outback Steakhouse’s global brand image could help to expand the business to other overseas markets,” an industry insider said. “Investors with a focus on East Asia may consider acquiring the company.”
The Gong Cha Korea deal is a good example. In 2014 private equity firm Unison Capital acquired the Korean unit of Gong Cha before injecting additional capital to buy a controlling stake in the bubble tea chain’s previous parent company Royal Tea Taiwan in 2017. Last year it sold the company to TA Associates which bet on its potential growth from the Japanese market.
“Jollibee also acquired Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf to expand its business to a global scale,” said the industry insider. Filipino restaurant operator Jollibee Foods and Vietnamese franchise brand Viet Thai International bought 100 percent of the coffee franchise from the Mirae Asset Private Equity-led consortium for $350 million in 2019.
(Reporting by Byung-yoon Kim)