Portillo's in Talks with Berkshire Partners for $1B Buyout

Portillo's, the largest privately-owned restaurant group in the Midwest, is in talks with Berkshire Partners

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Portillo's Restaurant Group has entered into a "definitive agreement" with buyout firm Berkshire Partners LLC.

Private investment firm Berkshire Partners LLC (not to be confused with Warren Buffet’s holding company Berkshire Hathaway, Inc, ) announced on July 1 that it has entered into a “definitive agreement” with Portillo’s, the Chicago-based restaurant group behind Portillo’s Hot Dogs, Barnelli's Pasta Bowl, Honey-Jam Café, Luigi’s House, Julian’s Piano Bar, and various retail properties.

In 1963, Dick Portillo opened up the very first Portillo’s hot dog stand, known as The Dog House.

Today, the restaurant group is the largest privately owned restaurant group in the Midwest, and incorporates a total of 38 restaurants, a catering and shipping division, and two shopping plazas.

Although terms of the transaction have not been disclosed, a source close to the matter told Reuters that Berkshire Partners had outbid other private equity firms to buy the restaurant group for close to $1 billion. 

“Portillo’s is my life’s work and I remain committed to ensuring the continued growth and success of the business,” announced founder Dick Portillo. “I was seeking an experienced partner that shared our vision for the Company and an appreciation for our culture. After careful consideration, Berkshire Partners proved to be the best choice. I look forward to working together to further strengthen our company.”

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Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.