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Zaxbys-to-Get-Goldman-Sachs-investment.jpg Zaxby's Franchising LLC
Goldman Sachs and Zaxby's expect the investment deal to close by the end of 2020.

Goldman Sachs to take ‘significant stake’ in Zaxby's

Banking division’s funds to invest in Georgia-based chicken brand

Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division will be acquiring a “significant stake” in Zaxby’s Operating Co. L.P., the companies said Wednesday.

The Athens, Ga.-based quick-service company said the new partnership will support growth for the brand “as well as expansion into new sales channels.” The companies expect to finalize the deal by the end of year.

Zaxby’s has more than 900 restaurants, serving chicken fingers, wings and sauces, in 17 Southeastern states.

Zaxby's was founded in 1990 by childhood friends Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley.

"I look forward to working with the team at Goldman Sachs to continue building the brand I founded 30 years ago in Statesboro, Ga.,” said McLeroy, Zaxby’s CEO, in a statement. “This partnership symbolizes the strength of our company, and their involvement will accelerate our growth and expansion into a national brand.”

Nicole Agnew, managing director of the Goldman Sachs Merchant Division, said, “Zaxby's is a fantastic company with a founder-led culture, loyal customers and talented employees. We are excited to partner with the management team to provide long-term capital for their next phase of expansion."

Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC and Stephens Inc. served as financial advisers to Zaxby's. King & Spalding LLP and Fortson, Bentley and Griffin P.A. served as legal advisers to Zaxby's. Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP served as legal adviser and Goldman Sachs served as financial adviser to Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking.

The Merchant Banking division is Goldman Sachs’ primary center for long-term investing.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected]

Follow him on Twitter: @RonRuggless

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