Sale of Subway Appears to Be Near

The potential buyer, Roark Capital, owns Dunkin’ and other QSRs.

August 22, 2023

In February, Subway confirmed that it was for sale. The Wall Street Journal, at the time, speculated the asking price could be $10 billion.

It appears that a sale is close to being finalized. Roark Capital, which owns Arby’s and Buffalo Wild Wings, is nearing a deal to buy the sandwich QSR for $9.6 billion.

"Subway does not intend to make any further public comment regarding the process until the transaction has been completed," the company told Reuters in an emailed statement.

Reuters noted that for the first half of 2023, Subway saw a 9.3% increase in same-store sales in North America. In July, Subway spent $80 million to roll out meat slicers in all its restaurants.

Subway has been owned by its founding families for over 50 years. It has more than 20,000 U.S. locations and about 37,000 total locations.

According to the Journal, “Subway has steadily closed U.S. locations but is expanding abroad. It has signed 15 deals with international franchisees since 2021 and aims to open around 9,000 restaurants through the agreements. Subway said its deals include one to open nearly 4,000 locations in China in the next 20 years.”

Roark’s holdings include Hardee’s/Carl’s Jr., Cinnabon, Arby’s, Jimmy John’s, and Dunkin’.

Nation’s Restaurant News noted that “Sources said the potential sale remains competitive and fluid.”