American fast-food restaurant chain Jack in the Box is expanding its national footprint with the purchase of Del Taco Restaurants in a deal worth around $575m, or $12.51 a share.

The deal value includes the assumption of existing debt.

Jack in the Box CEO Darin Harris said: “We are thrilled to welcome Del Taco, a beloved brand and proven regional winner, to the Jack in the Box family.

“This is a natural combination of two like-minded, challenger brands with outstanding growth opportunities. Together, Jack in the Box and Del Taco will benefit from a stronger financial model, gaining greater scale to invest in digital and technology capabilities, and unit growth for both brands.

“This acquisition fits squarely in our strategic pillars and helps us create new opportunities for the franchisees, team members and guests of both brands.”

Established in 1964, Del Taco focuses on Mexican cuisine.

The business operates around 600 restaurants across 16 US states and is based out of Lake Forest, California.

Combined, Del Taco and San Diego-based Jack in the Box will have more than 2,800 restaurants across 25 states in the country.

The deal is expected to create a stronger player in the quick-service restaurant (QSR) space.

Del Taco president and CEO John Cappasola said: “We are excited to have found a partner in Jack in the Box that shares our vision for the future and has the QSR expertise to further accelerate Del Taco’s growth.

“In recent years, we have uniquely positioned Del Taco as a leader in the growing Mexican QSR category, expanded our digital capabilities to enhance consumer convenience and focused on growing the brand through franchising, resulting in eight consecutive years of franchise same-store sales growth and an accelerating new unit pipeline.”

Jack in the Box anticipates around $15m in cost synergies by the end of fiscal 2023 from the acquisition.

To fund this takeover, the firm plans to issue additional securitisation notes from its existing programme, with a funding commitment by BofA Securities.

The deal awaits clearance by regulators and shareholders, with completion expected in the first calendar quarter of 2022.

Jack in the Box recorded an 8.6% rise in systemwide sales for the fourth quarter of the year, which ended 3 October.