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25 mergers and acquisitions in and around the restaurant industry in 2021

2021 was another busy year for mergers and acquisitions in and around the restaurant industry, from Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop buying Wing Zone on Jan. 4 to Jack in the Box buying Del Taco on Dec. 6 — with a couple more weeks still to go.

A year ago, the biggest M&A story was NPC International’s summer 2020 bankruptcy, which resulted in the 2021 Q1 sales of Wendy’s and Pizza Hut units to Flynn Restaurant Group, Wendy’s parent company and Delight Restaurant Group.

The company that made the most moves this year by far was Fat Brands, which acquired four restaurant chains in 2021 after buying Johnny Rockets in 2020.

In the restaurant technology space, Squarespace purchased reservations platform Tock in March, and Sweetgreen acquired Spyce in late August.

In the biggest transactions of the year, multiconcept operator JAB Holding Co. in early August gathered some of its early daypart brands under one platform, Panera Brands, which in early November said it would return to the public markets. And in November, Restaurant Brands International announced plans to add Firehouse Subs to its portfolio.

Click through the gallery to read more about these acquisitions and more from 2021.

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