The big news in franchising over the Easter holiday was the purchase of the popular pizza franchise Papa Murphy’s by the private equity firm Lee Equity Partners.
A member of the Franchise Direct family, Papa Murphy’s have experienced huge growth since they were recapitalized by Charlesbank in 2004. QSR magazine estimates that there are now over 1200 Papa Murphy’s units across America and the president of Lee Equity said he looks forward to expanding the pizza franchise into new areas.
"This is an outstanding brand with a strong management team. We are very excited about the expansion possibilities into areas of the country where they have little or no presence today," Thomas H. Lee said.
There’s been no revelations yet of the terms of the deal. But it’s clear that, in this post-recession environment, private business firms are eyeing the franchise sector and understand that further developing franchise brands is a path to greater profits. Pizza franchises are obviously seen as a star investment.
"This new chapter with Lee Equity will undoubtedly benefit all of the brand's stakeholders, including our franchisees, employees, and vendors. I look forward to working together to provide an even stronger foundation for expansion and profitable growth," said John Barr, Papa Murphy’s CEO.