Bridgepoint to Fork Over $678M for Stake in U.K.-Based Sandwich Chain

London-based Bridgepoint, a European private equity firm, will become majority owner of sandwich shop company Pret A Manger via an acquisition deal valued at approximately $678 million.  As Bridgepoint takes a chunk of the U.K-based chain, McDonald’s will make its exit as a minority owner after seven years with the disposition of its 33 percent share of the company.  Pret A Manger was established in 1986 and today, has a 200-store portfolio that includes 175 shops in England and Scotland, 14 in the United States (all located in New York City) and 11 in Hong Kong. The sites typically range in size from 600 square feet to 3,000 square feet. Pret A Manger’s stated expansion plans call for the opening of an about 30 stores this year, seven of which will be in New York.  Further details of other minority owners who will sell their stake in Pret A Manger to Bridgepoint are unavailable. Bridgepoint, however, will not be the only buyer, as Goldman Sachs has committed to purchasing a minority share of the company. Additionally, Pret A Manger’s founders and management team will reinvest in the business.