Bloomin' Brands has sold and refranchised 45 Outback Steakhouses in Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, and New Mexico to Cerca Trova Restaurant Concepts. The franchisor also sold eight Outback restaurants and a Carrabba's Italian Grill located in Montana, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming to Evergreen Restaurant Group LLC. Both deals closed in late April.
Cerca Trova has operated Outback restaurants in California since 1994 and is backed by private equity firm H.I.G. Capital. Cerca Trova is Bloomin' Brands' largest franchisee.
"This partnership will provide additional energy and resources to Cerca Trova as we expand," says Steve Weigel, president and CEO, of Cerca Trova Restaurant Concepts. "Working with the entire team at Outback is an honor and a privilege and this partnership will allow the brand to continue to prosper."
The second deal involved Evergreen Restaurant Group, a franchisee that operates Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba's Italian Grill, and Bonefish Grill restaurants in the northwest.
"Operating three of the finest casual dining brands in the country is very rewarding," says Jeff Jones, president and CEO of Evergreen Restaurant Group. "We are very pleased to add the additional Outback restaurants to our portfolio and commence operating Carrabba's Italian Grill as well."
Cerca Trova now operates all Outback Steakhouse restaurants across five states, while Evergreen runs its multiple restaurant brands across seven states.
"Both Cerca Trova and Evergreen are excellent operators and have been successful Outback franchisees for more than 20 years," says Suk Singh, global chief development officer & franchising. "We're confident that with their expertise, knowledge of our brands, and dedication to providing an outstanding Outback experience, this will be a seamless transition for our guests."
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