Joe’s Crab Shack Parent Buys Romano’s Macaroni Grill
Ignite Restaurant Group, which operates 129 Joe’s Crab Shack and 15 Brick House Tavern+Tap restaurants, is adding Romano’s Macaroni Grill to its casual-dining stable. Ignite is purchasing the 210-unit chain from Golden Gate Capital; the $55 million acquisition includes Brinker International’s minority share in Romano’s. The casual-dining Italian food chain was founded in 1988 and subsequently purchased by Brinker, which sold it to Golden Gate in 2008. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter. Romano’s currently owns and operates 186 units and franchises five units in 36 states and franchises 19 stores in nine U.S. territories and foreign countries. Last year, it generated about $385 million in revenue.