FILE PHOTO: The name sign of the first Jollibee restaurant in the UK is seen, in London. Image: Reuters

Philippines’ Jollibee Foods Corp (JFC), a major Asian fast-food operator, said on Wednesday it had agreed to acquire U.S. brand Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (CBTL) for $100 million as part of its rapid expansion outside its home market.

“The acquisition of Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf will be Jollibee’s largest and most multinational so far with business presence in 27 countries,” Jollibee Chairman Tony Tan Caktiong said in a statement, adding that the acquisition will add 14% to its global system-wide sales and 26% to its total store network.

Los Angeles-based CBTL has 1,189 outlets spread across the United States, Southeast Asia and the Middle East, and is rapidly growing in Asia. Nearly three-fourths of its outlets are franchised.

JFC will invest $100 million for an 80% share in a Singapore holding company that will acquire CBTL. The remaining 20% stake will be owned by JFC’s partner in its Vietnam coffee and restaurant business.

JFC will invest another $250 million, which will be paid back by the holding company.

Reuters | MANILA

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