Johnny Rockets to be acquired

WASHINGTON The advertising mogul and Washington celebrity who owns the Redskins football team and Six Flags amusement parks is buying the Johnny Rockets retro-themed diner chain through his RedZone Capital private-equity firm.

Aprice was not disclosed, but the 202-unit chain’s value has been assessed by analysts at more than $500 million. The deal is expected to close during March.

RedZone is an investment vehicle of Dan Snyder, who reputedly earned $1 million from investments while still in his teens and then built on that fortune by launching an advertising company. Snyder told several newspapers that he would use his marketing know-how to raise the stature of the concept. He also said he plans to add some 800 units during the next five years, including Johnny Rockets Express outlets in theme parks, airports, malls and stadiums.

Johnny Rockets, based in Lake Forest, Calif., would be Snyder’s first foodservice holding.