Arby’s Restaurant Group (ARG) has agreed to purchase American dining chain Buffalo Wild Wings (BWW) in an all-cash deal valued at approximately $2.9bn, including BWW’s net debt.

The companies have entered into a definitive merger agreement, which has been unanimously approved by both companies’ Boards of Directors and is subject to the approval of BWW shareholders.

Planned to be completed during the first quarter of 2018, the deal will also require regulatory approvals and satisfy customary closing conditions.

Arby’s Restaurant Group chief executive officer Paul Brown said: “Buffalo Wild Wings is one of the most distinctive and successful entertainment and casual dining restaurant companies in America.

“We are excited to welcome a brand with such a rich heritage, led by an exceptionally talented team. We look forward to leveraging the combined strengths of both organisations into a truly differentiated and transformative multi-brand restaurant company.”

Paul Brown will oversee BWW, which will become a privately-held subsidiary of Arby’s and operate as an independent brand.

Barclays and Goldman Sachs are serving as financial advisors to ARG and BWW, respectively, while White & Case and Faegre Baker Daniels are acting as legal counsel to ARG and BWW respectively.

For the third quarter ended on 24 September 2017, BWW’s total revenue increased 0.5% to $496.7m but same-store sales declined by 2.3% at company-owned locations and 3.2% in franchised locations.

Founded in 1964, Arby’s is the second-largest sandwich restaurant brand in the world with more than 3,300 restaurants in seven countries.

Arby’s is majority owned by private equity firm Roark Capital Group (Roark), which has controlling stakes in Auntie Anne’s, Cinnabon, Jimmy John’s, Naf Naf Grill and Schlotzsky’s.