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Triarc still exploring options for Deerfield firm

NEW YORK Arby’s brand parent Triarc Cos. Inc. said Monday that the deal to sell its controlling interest in asset-management firm Deerfield & Co. LLC was terminated on Friday because the buyer was unable to garner “acceptable” financing during the credit market instability.

Triarc said it would continue to explore options for Deerfield, which it had agreed in April to sell for about $300 million to diversified services firm Deerfield Triarc Capital Corp. The move was expected to help reposition Triarc as a pure-play restaurant company that would operate and franchise the Arby’s brand and that was on the lookout for potential acquisitions.

Triarc’s interest in acquiring Wendy’s International Inc. has been discussed in public filings for some time, and the company has said it could be willing to pay as much as $3.6 billion for the No. 3 burger brand. It wasn’t immediately clear whether the Deerfield deal’s implosion would affect Triarc’s ability to make restaurant acquisitions.

Triarc’s Arby’s system comprises more than 3,600 corporate or franchised restaurants worldwide.

Financier Nelson Peltz holds a controlling interest in Triarc and serves as its non-executive chairman after stepping down from his executive post in April. Through his investment funds, Peltz holds a 9.8-percent stake in Dublin, Ohio-based Wendy’s, which operates or franchises about 6,600 units.

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