NEW YORK, January 11, 2005 – Real Mex Restaurants, Inc., a portfolio company of Bruckmann, Rosser, Sherrill & Co.(“BRS”) today announced it has formally acquired Chevys Inc.’s Chevys Fresh Mex® Restaurants and Fuzio Universal Pasta®, making it the largest operator of full-service, Mexican restaurants in the country.
With the acquisition, Real Mex Restaurants’ combined systems sales will exceed half a billion dollars, becoming the largest operator of casual dining Mexican restaurants in the country. “This is an exciting time for our organization as we look forward to continued growth in same store sales in our core El Torito and Acapulco brands, opening 5 to 6 new units in 2005 and bringing Chevys into the Real Mex Restaurants portfolio,” said Fred Wolfe, president and CEO of Real Mex Restaurants.
“This acquisition provides our customers with the widest array of Mexican food options in the United States from the Fresh Mex® experience of Chevy’s, to the authentic Mexican cuisine of El Torito, and the casual California Mexican cuisine of our Acapulco Mexican Restaurants,” said Wolfe. “We welcome Chevys and Fuzio into our family of restaurants and are excited to provide new growth and development opportunities for our employees throughout the Real Mex Restaurants organization.”
Real Mex Restaurants announced it has appointed Charles “Chuck” Rink as president of Chevys Fresh Mex® Restaurants. Rink brings more than 20 years of operations experience, at Visions Restaurants, Inc., Restaurant Enterprises Group and W.R. Grace, in multiple segments of the restaurant industry to his new position. Additionally, Rink will maintain his role as Real Mex Restaurants’ chief operating officer, a position he’s held since 2002.
Chevys Inc., which operates 69 company-owned Chevys Fresh Mex® restaurants and 37 franchised restaurants located in 15 states along with five company-owned Fuzio Universal Pasta® Restaurants and four franchised properties located in Northern California, has been operating as a debtor in possession under Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code since October, 2003. The acquisition is part of a plan of reorganization, and the properties will continue to operate as Chevys Fresh Mex® Restaurants and Fuzio Universal Pasta® Restaurants under the agreement.
Real Mex Restaurants, headquartered in Long Beach, California, is one of the largest full-service, casual dining Mexican restaurant chain operators in the United States, with 120 restaurants in California and six other states. These include 69 El Torito Restaurants, 39 Acapulco Mexican Restaurants, six El Torito Grill Restaurants and Las Brisas in Laguna Beach, along with several regional restaurant concepts such as Who-Song & Larry’s, Casa Gallardo, El Paso Cantina, Keystone Grill and GuadalaHARRY’S. Real Mex Restaurants is committed to the highest standards and is dedicated to serving the freshest Mexican food with excellent service in a clean comfortable, and friendly environment.
BRS is a New York based private equity investment firm with approximately $1.2 billion under management. BRS was founded in 1995 and has since invested in over 20 companies in the following industries: restaurants, consumer goods, specialty retail, recreation/leisure, apparel, home furnishings, industrial and commercial services (including equipment rental), commercial equipment manufacturing, wholesale distribution and healthcare services. BRS makes leveraged buyout, recapitalization/restructuring and growth capital investments in companies with superior management, predictable cash flow, strong market share and growth potential. All management teams of BRS companies are equity investors in their businesses.