GE and Citizens Refinance Giordano’s
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GE and Citizens Refinance Giordano’s

giordano nf1Giordano’s, the world-famous stuffed pizza restaurant chain based in Chicago and a portfolio company of Victory Park Capital, has secured a $51 million credit facility from GE Capital Franchise Finance and Citizen’s Bank. The new facility refinances existing debt and funds a longer term capital need of the company for restaurant expansion.

Giordano’s is a casual Italian dining business known primarily for its iconic “World Famous Chicago Stuffed Pizza.”  Giordano’s, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February 2011, was acquired by Victory Park for $61.6 million in November 2011.  Giordano’s currently operates both company owned and franchised restaurants in Illinois, Indiana, and Florida.  The company also sells its pizza nationwide through its website.  Giordano’s was founded in 1974 by Efren and Joseph Boglio and is headquartered in Chicago (www.giordanos.com).

“We were impressed with GE Capital’s proven reputation as one of the largest lenders in the restaurant finance sector and are confident they will offer strategic value to the overall growth strategy for Giordano’s,” said Chad Peterson, principal at Victory Park.  “The latest credit facility will provide Giordano’s with significant flexibility to continue to execute on its development plan.”

GE Capital Franchise Finance is a lender to the US franchise finance market via direct sales and portfolio acquisitions.  The business specializes in financing mid-market operators with multiple stores in the restaurant and hospitality industries (www.gefranchisefinance.com).

Citizen’s Bank is one of the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, with $133 billion in assets as of December 31, 2014.  Citizen’s offers a range of retail and commercial banking products and services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, large corporations and institutions. Citizen’s is headquartered in Providence, RI (www.citizensbank.com).

 “The new capital represents the next step in the continued development of our business,” said Giordano’s CEO Yorgo Koutsogiorgas. “We look forward to working with a team as experienced in the franchise sector as GE Capital and believe Giordano’s is well positioned for future growth.”

Victory Park Capital invests from $10 million to $50 million per transaction in small cap public companies and middle market private companies that typically generate less than $150 million in revenue and less than $30 million of EBITDA. The firm focuses on complex situations and seeks to build long term sustainable value in its companies. Victory Park was founded in 2007 and is based in Chicago with additional offices in Boston, New York and San Francisco (www.victoryparkcapital.com).

© 2015 PEPD • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 4-1-15

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