Subway Eyes $10B Deal: Report

It would be 'one of the most expensive deals for a restaurant chain in history'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2023 7:21 AM CST
Subway Ponders $10B Sale: Report
In this Feb. 23, 2018 file photo, the Subway logo is seen on a soft drink cup next to a sandwich at a restaurant in Londonderry, NH.   (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

Subway, a fast-food company that has remained in the hands of its two founding families for more than 50 years, is exploring a possible sale. The restaurant chain with more US locations than any other has retained advisers to explore selling the company for as much as $10 billion, the Wall Street Journal reports, noting discussions are in the early stages and could come to nothing. "As a privately held company, we don't comment on ownership structure and business plans," says Subway, founded in 1965 by Fred DeLuca and Peter Buck and based in Milford, Connecticut. "We continue to be focused on moving the brand forward with our transformational journey to help our franchisees be successful and profitable."

A source confirms the report to Reuters, which notes the sandwich chain denied rumors that it was readying for a sale in 2021. A $10 billion sale "would be one of the most expensive deals for a restaurant chain in history—rivaling the 2014 purchase of Tim Hortons by Burger King for $11 billion," per Restaurant Business Magazine. Subway—which counts 37,000 locations around the world, including 21,000 in the US—did $9.4 billion in sales in 2021, up 13% from 2020. That's well below its 2012 peak of $18 billion, before "aggressive expansion overextended the brand," per RBM. Since taking control in November 2019, CEO John Chidsey, the chain's first CEO to come from outside its founding families, has focused on closing restaurants and restructuring operations, per the Journal. (More Subway stories.)

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